Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Post 2

     Clay Shirky in his chapter Here Comes Everybody talks about how mass amateurization is taking over who is publishing news and the way it is published. News is first read on Twitter as opposed to the news on TV or even in a newspaper. Anyone is now able to publish their work through blogging and have it seen by people without actually having a career in journalism. Shirky sees mass amateurization as negative because the credentials of who is a professional journalist in now being questioned. "Now, though, the problems of production, reproduction, and distribution are much less serious. As a consequence, control over the media is less completely in the hands of the professionals." (59). Because contributing to the media is now much easier than ever, the job of a professional journalist is being diminished.

     In Henry Jenkins chapter, "Why Heather Can Write", he describes the concept of fan fiction culture and mass amateurization. Jenkins describes this as people becoming more inspired to write and becoming more involved in their stories. "The example of the Daily Prophet suggests yet another important cultural competency: role-playing both as a means of exploring a fictional realm and as a means of developing a richer understanding of yourself and the culture around you." (185). Jenkins describes fan culture as being positive and influencing young writers to expand on not only their writing skills, but also their creativity. This type of learning, as Jenkins describes, isn't taught in a school environment and a person can teach themselves through active participation. Younger generations are able to write their own stories and have them on the internet for others to see, which is  something that probably wasn't happening a couple of years ago. Heather Lawver created a fan site based off of Harry Potter so young fans would be able to write stories and be able to express themselves through their writing in ways they probably wouldn't have been able to in a classroom environment. Unlike Shirky, Jenkins sees mass amateurization as a positive movement.

     Being a journalism major, I do question whether or not anyone should have the right to publish articles on any topic and if my credentials won't mean as much in a couple of years. I don't believe that a newspaper will be completely taken over because people still appreciate the physicality of holding a newspaper and knowing that professionals and editors are the ones putting the news and the paper together. As technology continues to advance the professionalism of a journalist will diminish because everyone has the ability to publish articles online, post pictures, or even make videos. What used to be difficult to achieve is now much easier for a much lower price. Though, I don't disagree with Jenkins theory and i do believe that people will have a better appreciation for written work if they get involved in writing stories other than the ones that they are told to write in school.

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