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May 10, 2005



Hi. I made my way here via RConversation. I think your point that the voices of ordinary people are important and deserve to be heard is very important. Maybe if the politicians would listen to ordinary people and their ordinary lives, they'd be making different decisions. It's something that the "A-list" bloggers and famous people like Rebecca McKinnon sometimes seem to forget.

Alex Williams

Artisan journalism makes sense. We're in a world where digital, shared self-expression is the norm. But it takes courage to share your words, voice or even image across the Internet. It's deeply personal for a lot of people. Artists must face their critics all the time. They do because they believe in their work. Bloggers, podcasters and vloggers are no different. Critics are always ready to pounce.

It's funny because they teach you in journalism school that reporting is a craft. Well, so is blogging. Except that in the MSM they want you take all personal expression out of the reporting and editing. So, it is really not a craft at all. You may consider yourself participating in a craft if you are in the MSM. But that's an illusion. The MSM wants the reporter to produce, unbiased, breaking news and feature stories that get people's attention. That's not self-expression. That's not a craft. That's an approach which fits into a business model, developed in the 19th century when yellow journalism madce its mark. Breaking news equaled big headlines. And big headlines lead to a healthy flow of revenue. There was no room for crafts. That was the old way, the pre-industrial method. New industrial journalism lead to the elimination of the craft from the jounalistic world.

This all makes me think of Ben Franklin, who loved to write. He used his printing press as a blog, to express his thoughts. In a sense, he was a revolutionary blogger.

Today, RSS allows us to spread our stories far and wide. We are storyellers. And we are in the company of leaders like Ben Franklin.

It sure is nice to think of it that way. I'm proud to be an artisan journalist. Perhaps we should even call ourselves revolutionaries. Artists are always catalyst forces in revolutions. Makes sense that we are revolutionizing society, simply by being artisan journalists.

Now, here's my question...If we are artisan journalists, catalysts in a revolution, than what are MSM journalists? What do they represent?

makiyo Beauty's world

Very Infomative post. You made some good point. I especially found it useful where you stated Making art is a common and intimately human activity, filled with all the perils (and rewards) that accompany any worthwhile effort. The difficulties artmakers face are not remote and heroic, but universal and familiar. Bravo : )

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We're All Journalists in the Age of Ordinary Art - Crossroads Dispatches

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