Monday, February 02, 2009

Don't Lose Faith in the Papers

I have always been reminded that one thing that places journalists and bloggers apart is this: credibility. 

Without this, nobody will believe what you write. Nobody will even bother with what you say. Worse, you will forever remain as the jester. The loser. 

With so many blogs out there, this word credibility is taking a new phase lift. There is going to be credible blogs out there. Much as people proclaim that blogs are platforms for "keyboard warriors" who refuse to divulge their identities, there are many who have came clean with their names and faces. 

They now have cult followings on line. Simply look at how people like Mr Brown, the editors at TOC and Wayang Party have come forward to express their anti-establishment views. 

These are no longer madmen who rant and rave behind the cloak of anonymity

They are willing and dedicated to providing readers with credible news and commentaries that may run afoul with authorities if published in the mainstream media. 

As a result, readers often go online to find an alternative voice and an alternative view on matters which they believe that there is more to it than what the newspapers portray.

Certainly, you cannot deny the reader the right to full knowledge. 

But newspapers still give you the views that matters. The views that spark such debates on online platforms. 

You still cannot trust a blogger to take the time and effort off his full time job to run around the island to deliver you breaking news.

You still cannot trust a blogger to be always impartial on matters that are controversial.

And you still cannot trust a blogger to be truthful in whatever that he/she has got to say. After all, their research capacity is only limited to the Google search engine.

Journalists on the other hand receive a whole host of backing, reputation and authority to talk to people and to gather views. 

Journalists don't just hammer away on one view, they provide a diverse range of views and leave it to readers to decide what suits them. 

Journalists may write opinion pieces but that is merely to prep up their factual reports. 

And when the day ends, sub-editors and editors sit in front of these articles and proofread them again and again for reliability.

Yes blogs may be on the rise. Folks like Eugene Yeo, Mr Brown and Choo Zheng Xi may be drawing in large crowds with their work. 

But where news matters, nobody does it better than a journalist who sits behind his/her desk at the perceived "propaganda-spewing factory" of SPH.



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