Citizen Media Watch

december 18th, 2006

Citizen media voices: It's US, not YOU

Posted by Lotta Holmstrom

Following Time’s declaring of YOU as the Person of the Year, several voices in the citizen media world has been raised saying no, it’s not you, not as individuals – it’s us, WE are the media.

Juan Antonio Giner at Innovations in Newspapers:

The WE Media lost against the YOU Media.

Dan Gillmor at Citizen media center praises the choice, but criticizes the choice of ”You”:

there’s a tiny bit of reality in the fact that the cover didn’t say “Us” instead of “You” — in part because it was a vestige of the magazine’s traditional, royal thinking wherein they told us everything and we bought it or didn’t. If the people of the year are all of you, that leaves “we the deciders of what is news” still inside the gates.

The world has changed, as the magazine’s writers, photographers, artists and editors captured in this issue. Here’s the issue: It’s changed even more than they may want to concede deep down in their essentially top-down, corporate gut.

Jeff Jarvis at BuzzMachine:

This year’s cover reveals that the notion — or they would like to think, institution — of a single person of the year in the single biggest news magazine is such a social anachronism. It is a vestige of the mass era. It is the conceit of mass media that they could pick one person who mattered for the world and that we would listen.

So it’s wise of Time to pick many people. That’s the way the world really works.

Matthew Hurst at Data Mining pretty much takes TIME magazine’s article apart, saying their choice is uninspiring.

More negative comments can be found in the BBC Have Your Say forums.

Sure, there are things to criticize, but I still think it’s a good choice. ”US” would have been better wording for what they are trying to say, but I’d like to look past that and see that atleast they are on the right track.

There are more positive comments as well, of course.

Ben Companie at Rebuilding media:

Heady stuff for those of us who blog, who read blogs, who have recognized that the significance of YouTube (perhaps about to become the generic term for any user-content video sites, the way TiVo is often used to mean any sort of personal video recorder) just more than just silly pet tricks. Another cause for urgency for change for traditional media.

Jim Nail at Cymfony’ Influence 2.0:

In 1982, Time named the computer ”Machine of the Year”. Now they’ve gotten it right — its importance is not about the tool but how it is used.


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