What do you do if you want the latest news on the Long March? Visit dawn.com or geo.tv and you’ll get canned news reports that sum up a few hours worth of activity. Too little detail! Turn on a TV channel and you’ll find anchors filling in the gaps between gaps in news reporting, still not good enough.
Bravo the forces of new media then – this long march has created one of the finest demonstrations of citizen journalism I’ve seen.
SeeNReport has emerged as an incredibly active platform of SMS + MMS based reporting showing pictures of the march that no other news agency has been able to capture. PKLongMarch has bloggers from the midst of the horde sending minute-by-minute important news bulletins, but bringing together citizen journalists from all the cities the march passed through.
Combined, they dont just provide high frequency of updates, but make the news more relevant because they make you feel like you’re a part of the rally. In other words, they pretty much beat the socks off of all the biggest news organizations combined.
Citizen Journalism is alive in this country – old media should catch up and learn to tap into this monster, or give up.
What is also interesting is that citizen journalism doesnt really need fancy platforms to make it work either – a blog and seeNReport are both very simple platforms, but the community has chosen and adopted them moreso than, say, allvoices or the platforms being created by Dawn. This really makes you wonder about the viability of CitizenJo-based business models or startup ventures.
Speaking of which, Dawn has been trying to experiment with new media and citizen journalism recently too, but they’ve approached it with about the worst way possible – the Dawn Blog has anything but relevant-to-now stories or opinions…. they’re just using it to publish stories that wouldnt otherwise make it to print. The Dawn Citizen Journalism initiative is a farce on the medium because they’re asking submissions using a long-winded process.
If Dawn REALLY wants to get serious about this stuff they need to acquire SeeNReport today…. thats the type of platform you use for this. You get people energized to a cause, not send ads in papers.