We, the Citizen Journalists of Singapore

Crowdsourcing the Media

Recently tackled as part of Nexus 2007, "Crowdsourcing the Media" looked at how citizen journalism was changing the dynamics of the media landscape. It saw social media provocateur Kevin Lim moderating a session with online media luminaries Kathy Teo of CNET Networks, Jennifer Lewis of SPH's STOMP, and James Seng, Editor extraordinaire of tomorrow.sg (Left to right above).

Discussions centred around citizen journalism and its various forms (youtube, wikipedia etc) and included fascinating insights into how CNET and STOMP operated. As Jennifer puts it, there tend to be more "loser-generated" rather than "user-generated" content, and she does get her fair share of junk being MMS-ed and SMS-ed to her via 75557.

A key term being bandied about was the "wisdom of crowds". It was felt that with more and more Singaporeans participating in blogs and online forums, their collective voices may be a greater force to reckon with compared to the old mainstream media dominated days.

An interesting point raised was that the average Londoner reads about 3.5 newspapers a day. This means that they get their information from different sources. Compare this to Singapore with only one dominant press, and we can see why citizen journalism and blogs are so popular here. People simply want to hear from alternative sources, and this is where platforms like STOMP, tomorrow.sg, and ping.sg comes in.

The session ended with a most interesting exchange between tomorrow.sg's James, ping.sg supporter ClappingTrees and its creator Uzyn. I am glad that it ended somewhat amicably, with both parties agreeing that competition is good for the Singapore blogosphere. There can never be one blog aggregator too many here!

For more, read Kevin's comprehensive post here.

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