Did the Three Little Pigs Get a Fair Trial?

The internet is changing how journalism works.

To begin with, the "openness" of the web means that users are coming to expect more transparency to world affairs. Whether it's true or not, it seems as if secrets are becoming harder to keep as protestors, leakers and citizen journalists adapt the new online tools of social media (e.g., Facebook, Twitter and YouTube) to share and respond to stories immediately online. Sometimes journalists working for Old Media outlets (like The Guardian) are picking up "user-generated" stories and feedback - amplifying the voices of Wikileaks, Andrew Breitbart and the Arab Spring - as well as the responses from the audience.

A key change roiling the Old World media outlets is interactivity. In many cases, Old World media outlets have decided that simply reporting the news - with a page or two reserved for professionally-generated opinion and user letters - is no longer enough. Many Old World media outlets are also making a regular practice of including the voices of users - elevating user opinion and feedback to new heights.

The two-minute video at the top of this post was created by The Guardian - apparently to market their new internet-enabled approach to journalism. What I find fascinating about this twist on the Three Little Pigs story is it's density. The role that social media and user opinion can share in the evolution of a news story is succinctly laid out (compare the Three Little Pigs video to the evolution of the women's rights / religious freedom story that took shape around Rush Limbaugh's recent attack on a Georgetown University student's morality).

It's tough to imagine a tighter review of the benefits and the costs of the new "open journalism."

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