Finally at Moose Camp – notes on Journalism

Post ImageSo we slept in a little this morning, and we took our time. Compared to past trips, this one has been relatively relaxing thus far! We finally made it to UBC’s downtown campus (entirely underground in case you didn’t know) and got our lanyards. Kind of neat idea – in addition to your name and web address on the nametag, there are four lines for “tags”.

We’re in Mark Hamilton’s session called We’re all journalists now. Right next to us? Robert Scoble with the same tablet pc as I am typing this on. Here are some notes on the session:

  • Some people in the room seem to think that there is great power in having tools that make publishing very easy and always on, while others thing that creates a larger problem of filtering and managing new information.
  • Scoble makes the point that he can write about a product and a week later 3000 people have signed up for that new product, and that this method of distribution did not exist ten years ago. Others disagree, saying the scheme has always been here, we’re just confused with “blogging” being new.
  • Someone mentions the long tail – noting there are three or four bloggers for every topic, and this has a huge impact on commerce.
  • Mark says the democratization of media is very confusing…there are so many different perspectives. He also notes that he has 3.7 days of podcasts on his iPod, and that the creators of those podcasts are not going to stop and wait for him to catch up, they are going to continue producing content.
  • Mark touches on the fear of not being connected – you feel like you’ve missed something if you don’t keep up, or if you forget your camera, etc. Some conclusions he’s had: in terms of mass media, we have never been as well served as we are now, but it still has a whole bunch of flaws; there are so many different and new types of journalism like video blogs and sites like NowPublic; journalists are starting to realize that collectively, the audience is smarter!
  • Journalism right now is messy, just like tagging. Things are changing. Maybe it’s going to be messy forever?
  • Chris Pirillo is wondering whether “amateurs” should be called journalists? What about journalists who go through formal training and that sort of thing? Mark notes that strictly speaking, there is no credential for a journalist, anyone can walk into a newspaper and become a journalist. Chris says, “if I can apply a bandaid, does that make me a doctor?” People are fighting him on this one, but I tend to agree…just because you’re a blogger doesn’t mean you’re a journalist.

Thank goodness for wireless 🙂