J-school prof gets it bigtime!

J-school prof gets it bigtime!
: Hats off to James Glen Stovall, a j-prof at the University of Alabama, whose new textbook on Web Journalism seems to get it, really get it. Hypergene Medialog [via CyberWriter] pulls a few notable quotes. This one sums up weblogs and their value and significance to big-time journalism as well as anything I’ve seen yet:

… on some topics, weblogs are a source of up-to-date information that no media organization attempts to match. In addition, weblogs have an inherent respect for their audiences and take advantage of their wide-ranging knowledge and expertise. While contributions may not come from trained journalists and may not be vetted through a traditional editing process, weblogs offer the possibility of presenting a much wider range of points of view about information than would be possible in the traditional media.

That’s precisely the point I’ve been trying to make to the NY Times on Zeyad and the Bahgdad anti-terrorism demonstrations: Weblogs are a new source of information and viewpoints we could never before afford to gather. That’s valuable. Period.

Stovall on web journalism:

This new relationship will have profound effects on the way journalists gather information and make decisions. Readers are likely to become sources of information and lead journalists to new inquiries and stories. They could provide valuable perspective to journalists who are new to a story or not part of the community they cover (two of the major criticism of journalists today), offering points of view that journalists would not normally hear in talking with