Friday, December 12, 2008

Technology Scale

I feel like I'm in a bit of technology limbo. I blog, I follow blogs I feel a connection with, post comments on blogs I feel are worthwhile, use my laptop to stay in touch with family, friends, colleagues and students, use technology in my classrooms, and dabble in new technology now and then. I was aware of Twitter over a year ago - though I only tried it, but really did not jump in. I felt some pride in knowing a technology before most of my students....
However, reality is, on the whole scale of technology I certainly lean toward the ignorant. As a journalist, journalism professor and adviser to the Ferris State Torch I am doing my students a disservice if I do not move at least above the average on the technology scale. How can I expect them to be ahead of me?
That said, it is my goal to improve my standing over the coming years. I'm hoping to start by learning applications of Flash. I just found this link today. That's what office hours, summer break and other such times are for after all. Right?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Citizen journalism

As Jay Rosen of NYU defined it, citizen journalism is basically when consumers of information have the tools in their hands to produce and disseminate information. Well, we do. Computers are all we need to become journalists - spreading information all over the world.
I believe this process will be largely self-regulating, as with businesses. Do a good job, prove you're a reliable source of information, and others will stick with you. Fail to be reliable and others will abandon you.
This doesn't mean it will be a smooth process. And it doesn't mean we're ready to take off into a full-fledged, successful venture where citizen journalism is a viable alternative for information on a daily basis.
A former reporter colleague of mine, Matthew D. LaPlante, made a great point recently when we were exchanging some ideas by e-mail. He said, "I think it's going to be nurtured from the ground up, preferably through the public education system."
I agree with Matt. And I hope to be a part of this nurturing in some small way.