Given the success of Wikis, Creative Commons and open-source, it is tempting to see the future of journalism in free-to-edit, unpaid websites. These sites, such as NowPublic, are popular but have been criticized for being opinion-driven and derivative. You can judge for yourself the standard of articles on such sites, but what is undeniable is that only a small minority of stories are based on first-hand new information. Original journalism is in short supply....
The better the standard of photojournalism we receive, the more we can charge our media clients and pay our contributors - this will, in turn, encourage more people to take up journalism and produce better work. In this way, Demotix aims to create a ‘virtuous circle’ of citizen-journalism, which will have especially positive effects in places of the world without a free press and where selling a photo could become a crucial source of income.
Open-source, creative-commons licensed reporting is great, and it can coexist with remunerated citizen-journalism. We believe that quality journalism must survive, and that it’s worth paying for.
Friday, January 30, 2009
Why pay citizen journalists?
Demotix, London's "Citizen Newswire," explains why it pays contributors, however little: