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The Awe-Inspiring Power of Citizen Journalism
New media phenomenon will eventually replace the traditional newspaper
Alex Argote (alexphil)     Print Article 
Published 2007-08-22 09:52 (KST)   
Imagine a brave new world of tomorrow that can be regarded as one technological utopia, an advanced Earth bristling with the best that science and technology can offer. Barring another primordial destructive conflict among greedy nations, humanity may yet witness in a few years or decades some life-changing scientific miracles meant for the general welfare of mankind.

There is no reason to believe that the coming inventions and developments in the exalted field of science and modern engineering will not be beneficial to men. Already the wonders of today's instant communications across enormous distances of this Earth is improving the lives of millions and slowly altering the elitist and feudal economics of certain societies and countries.

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With a single click of a mouse for instance, books and documents may be sent through the efficient world wide web or internet to set in motion another cycle of intelligent discussion in gearing connected communities or scientific circles to initiate developments in the thrust for progress.

In the realm of free speech and true democratic discussion, nowhere is the gift of modern communications more prevalent than in the new worthwhile pastime of blogging and a new fact in news reporting that is rapidly gaining foothold in global press - Citizen journalism. This phenomenon is now making great waves across the digital world as the previously voiceless masses suddenly found themselves empowered with internet connected computers. Thanks to harnessing the energies of silicon and digital electronics, hundreds of millions of people around the world now have the opportunity to have their opinions, ideas and stories heard or read by cyber societies even on the other side of Earth minutes after a computer mouse is clicked by an idealistic cyber scribe.

New media companies like OhmyNews, Nowpublic, Orato were born and nurtured as the internet stabilized and became a firmament in today's civilization. Indeed, it is inevitable that in a few years, the traditional old newspapers will eventually disappear and a more powerful cyber army of internet news portals will take over. New studies and current surveys indicate a worldwide surge in the increase of traffic in certain news websites and a slow but steady decline in print broadsheet circulation. As the traditionally elite newspaper culture is torn down by digital media, more among the internet-savvy generation will offer revolutionary alternatives to the previously silent masses.

Apart from eventually saving legions of trees from being mowed down to feed the obsolete paper-hungry daily newsprints that only publish the ramblings of the select few and well-connected, the internet media offers intellectually healthy forums and discussions to mitigate the negative reach of online pornography and cyber crime that has permeated the information rich cyberspace like bloodsucking leeches. Notwithstanding the overwhelming barrage of internet prostitution and other feral cyber activities, it is a comforting thought that millions of responsible netizens are logging on to blogging and guerrilla news sites in a worldwide cyber effort to reclaim cyberspace for the intellectual progress of humanity.

Powerful mass news portals such as Nowpublic and OhmyNews are providing the impetous and synergy in empowering the steadily growing army of citizen news reporters fighting with their keyboards and raw ideas to recreate a new world about to enter a brave new era in politics and economics.

In the field of publishing, one self-publishing company, launched its website www.lulu.com with the intent to help millions of new novelists an outlet for their unique stories and a chance to see their toils come to possible fruition. Lulu provides an important platform for aspiring novelists to post their works and for millions of readers a wider choice of material to peruse other than those offered by mighty and powerful publishing houses that are hesitant to give new writers a chance.

By giving a voice to the masses who really matter in this world, the portals of citizen media have started a silent revolution that soon will tear down the remaining pockets of tyranny and fogs of darkness enshrouding the other side of the digital divide. True, there is much work to be done. More than half of Earth's six billion plus of living people remain without access to electricity, much less to the wonders of computers and technology. Half of the world's population still live in utter darkness and semi-ignorance. It is the duty for the connected and enlightened half to lift them out misery by logging-on and uniting in calling to worldwide change.

We citizen journalists therefore have a great mission and duty to lift humanity to even greater heights. Let us unite and forge a mighty cohesive thrust in effecting a total global transformation. A mighty workhorse in the form of internet is waiting to be tapped in this glorious and beneficent undertaking. Together, as idealistic cyber knights, we can all thunder across the digital void in leading the charge to breaking down the barriers to total change and prosperity for all.
©2007 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Alex Argote

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