BBC Report on Citizen Journalism

Democracy or chaos? The BBC's two-part radio series on citizen journalism asks if our new era of citizen reporting will deliver us a brighter future, or replace un-biased, fact-checked investigative reporting with inaccurate, unaccountable opinion.

The reporter talks to bloggers and academics in the world's most repressive countries, including Myanmar, where private internet is banned and the state arrests anyone walking around with a camera and mic. Here brave citizen journalists fill the void of a choked press.

Ultimately the report provides an insight that Video Volunteers has long understood: citizen journalism works amazingly well on the micro-level, where the citizen reporter dives deep into niche subjects mattering equally to her and an audience of peers. Citizen journalists turn news into a conversation, the audience into a participant. This might be the real communication revolution.

The series concludes with the reminder that the internet and camera are only a tools - change won't happen if everyone's parked in front of computers.Video Volunteers, with its equal emphasis on technical skills and community advocacy, understands this well.

Posted by Morgan Currie, VV Volunteer.

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