John Marshall and the Importance of Independent Media

With the expansion of the internet its not surprising that the media is increasingly turning to the web to share information with their readers. With a few clicks of a keyboard readers can access not just stories or video clips from their chosen news outlet but they have access to the information that is conveyed through multiple platforms. They can read a story, but they can also watch a clip about it or they can stumble across an interactive graph that visually explains a data driven element of a story.

As John Marshall pointed out in his keynote address, the internet doesn’t just provide the media with alternative story telling methods, but it also gives the readers an opportunity to help create the story and to actively engage in the news. With the rise of blogs, writers are able to ask their readership for their feedback, ask them for tips or to send them information about something they noticed at a local level that plays into a larger issue.

Marshall argues that the rise in blogs provides a space for collaborative journalism to flourish between the reader and the reporter. This relationship is hugely important for independent media because it makes the news less controlled. Marshall said, “the more voices you have, the more takes on the news, you’re just going to have a more vibrant and diverse news ecosystem – as opposed to having two or three gatekeepers that control the news.” By allowing collaborative journalism to flourish it brings more voices into the mix and in doing that it gives corporate media less power over story telling and the sharing of news.

having two or three gatekeepers that control the news.

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