J201 Section 310
September 28, 2013
Dan Gillmor’s article, “Who’s a Journalist? Does That Matter?” outlines a very important question in the new world of mass media consumption: who can we really call a journalist? The article claims that in the new media-ecosystem that we know today, just about anyone and everyone can create a form of journalism. No longer does journalism have to be refined to the elite class of reporters and professionals. For instance, the simple act of finding an interesting article online and emailing it to a group of people with a small comment on why they should read it is technically an act of journalism since they, “curated, aggregated, wrote commentary and created meta-data.” (1) However, Gilmor does make the distinction between what is journalism and what is not in the age of YouTube and blogs. Gillmor does this by elaborating that the question is no longer who’s a journalist, but what is journalism? He asserts that there is a difference between an act of journalism, commentary based on knowledge, and hands-on media creation. (1) Mainly, Dan Gillmor’s article describes the new way that our media is influenced and how journalism can no longer be defined the way it is.
“Who’s a Journalist? Does That Matter?” is a very opinion based article and mainly relies on Dan Gillmor’s qualifications for reliability as a source. However, Gillmor has plenty of credentials and experience to use as credibility. Dan has been involved in the journalism industry since 1984 when he first began writing for the Kansas City Times. He spent six years after with the Detroit Free Press before joining the San Jose Mercury News in 1994. It was with the Mercury News that Gillmor became intertwined with Silicon Valley and was one of the first journalists to integrate the Internet into their work. His blog during his years at the San Jose Mercury News was the first by a journalist for the mainstream news outlets. (2)
In 2004, Gillmor wrote the book, “We the Media: Grassroots Journalism By the People, For the People” which is widely seen as the first comprehensive look at way new technology and the way it’s relationship with journalism is transforming media as we know it. (3) Currently, Gillmor is an early-stage investor in several media ventures including websites, blogs, and media star-ups like Wikia Inc., founded by Wikipedia creator Jimmy Wales. He also still writes for blogs and other media including a semi-regular column at www.salon.com. (2) Dan also teaches digital media literacy at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.
Literary critics also agree that Gillmor is a viable source in the field of digital media literacy. Simon Waldman of the Guardian had shining reviews for Dan’s first book “We the Media” saying that anyone plotting the future for a media organization would be a fool if they did not read Gillmor’s book beforehand. (4) Gilmor also released a new book in 2010 call “Mediactive”. This book also had critics raving as David Kamerer describing the book as a guide to the new marketplace of ideas. (5) In terms of credentials, there are few journalists more qualified than Dan Gillmor to write about the new age of journalism in the age of technology.
(1) Gillmor, D. (n.d.). Who’s a journalist? Does that matter? - Salon.com. Salon.com. Retrieved September 28, 2013, from http://www.salon.com/2010/08/26/who_is_a_journalist/
(2) Dan Gillmor, Director, Knight Center for Digital Media Entrepreneurship, Kauffman Professor of Digital Media Entrepreneurship, Professor of Practice | The Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. (n.d.). The Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Retrieved September 28, 2013, from http://cronkite.asu.edu/faculty/gillmorbio.php
(3) About Me. (n.d.). Dan Gillmor on Grassroots Journalism, Etc.. Retrieved September 28, 2013, from http://dangillmor.typepad.com/about.html
(4) Review: We the Media by Dan Gillmor | Books | The G uardian . (n.d.). Latest news, world news, sport and comment from the Guardian | theguardian.com | The Guardian . Retrieved September 2 8, 2013, from http://www.theguardian.com/books/2004/nov/06/highereducation.news
(5) Kamerer, D. (2011, October 24). Book Review- Mediactive. AEJMC Hot Topics.
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