Bloggers = Journalists?

Bloggers can definitely provide the most up to date information on breaking news events as they happen, however one must question the validity of the information they provide. Journalists are held to a certain standard by their media employers and there are repercussions when they cross the line. Bloggers do not have this kind of restriction. Bloggers are free to post any and all content regardless of the facts. While we can paint all bloggers with the same brush you can’t believe everything you read on the Internet.

No US court has yet weighed in with authority on the debate about whether bloggers count as journalists, but the recent federal decision from South Carolina does indicate that at least some bloggers are journalists. It’s not about the title, it’s about the content, said Judge Henry Hurlong, Jr.; a journalist turns out to be anyone who does journalism, and bloggers who do so have the same rights and privileges under federal law as the “real” journalists. (story)


2 Responses to “Bloggers = Journalists?”

  1. 1 therealsouthkorea October 31, 2007 at 6:57 pm

    This sort of scares me…it makes me feel like now I have to be doubly correct that I’m not “defaming” someone on accident or “invading someone’s privacy” unintentionally when just blabbering about things I find interesting or pertinent in my life or people around me. I wonder if the criteria for journalism depends on the number of people who read your blog…I’m above 50 a day now…so do I own a “periodical” now?

  2. 2 jtsmyth8 October 31, 2007 at 7:45 pm

    I guess it comes down to how you present the information as fact or opinion. It really puts the onus on “established” blogs to do their research. But even in a court of law, I think it would be very difficult for a company to sue for defamation. However it’s not unheard of.
    It really puts freedom of speech to the test.
    Thanks for you comment.

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