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OMNI Holds 2nd Citizen Reporter Seminar
OhmyNews is in the early stages of building an unparalleled network of global correspondents
Todd Thacker (internews)     Print Article 
Published 2004-10-18 14:23 (KST)   
Ten new citizen reporters listen to OMNI's director Jean K. Min describe the philosophy behind OhmyNews' business model.
©2004 OMNI
[Update: Nov. 25]

OhmyNews International held its second citizen reporter seminar, Nov. 20, at the online newspaper's Gwanghwamun office. Ten young people from Canada, the United States, Australia, the Philippines and Ireland got acquainted at lunch before attending lectures on OhmyNews' business model and a general introduction to the basics of journalistic writing.

A map of OhmyNews International's network of global correspondents, as of May 3, 2005.
©2004 OMNI
In the past month, the first seminar's citizen reporters have written -- many for the first time -- newspaper stories on such topics as a Korean wine tour, two domestic film festivals, travelogues, U.S. flu vaccine rationing, and others.

Hailing from Canada, Australia, the Philippines, Ireland and the United States, these young people hope to take their stories to OMNI's global audience.
©2004 OMNI

[Oct. 18]

Eight budding citizen reporters came to OhmyNews' Gwanghwamun office in downtown Seoul for a seminar on participatory journalism, Saturday afternoon.

Hailing from Britain, Australia, Canada and the United States, the group heard two one-hour lectures on OhmyNews International (OMNI), citizen journalism and the basics of journalistic writing.

The topics discussed included how the OhmyNews model of reporting complements "professional" journalism, how to tailor a reporting style to a particular story and the kinds of common pitfalls new reporters should avoid.

The group attending Saturday's seminar is the first wave of foreign citizen reporters in Korea writing English-language news stories and features. The next seminar is planned for early November.

OMNI went online Feb. 22 with the aim of duplicating on a global scale the success of the Korean edition, which started with 727 citizen reporters nearly five years ago. OhmyNews now has 36,000 reporters submitting about 200 stories a day.

Just under 100 OMNI citizen reporters send stories from such nations as Iran, Colombia, England, Japan and Germany. OMNI hopes to have built a global network of 1,000 correspondents by the end of next year. This web of citizen reporters will be the linchpin of a formidable news organization.

OhmyNews has received a great deal of coverage recently in international media, including The Far East Economic Review, The Guardian, Newsweek, BBC and The New York Times.

In May, an English translation of a Korean citizen reporter's article from Fallujah, Iraq, broke OMNI's 10,000 hit mark for the first time. Coverage of the 2004 U.S. presidential elections, technology stories and travel articles all garner substantial reader attention, both domestic and international.

One big attraction to OhmyNews' reporting model is that it "two-way" journalism. Readers are able to give instantaneous feedback with comments left right at the bottom of the article. A reader who feels strongly about an issue can very easily submit his or her own article. And unlike a blog, citizen reporter's articles are subject to a strict editorial review.

Saturday's seminar covered OhmyNews participatory journalism and the nuts and bolts of a reporter's writing style.
©2004 OMNI
If you would like to attend OMNI's journalism seminar, please write to the editor at todd@ohmynews.com.
©2004 OhmyNews

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