Can a blogger be considered a journalist?
Everyone has a blog nowadays. But just because a person writes his/her thought about a particular topic on a public site, doesn’t mean s/he can already be called as journalist. Blogging is far different from journalism. Bloggers write their opinion in their story and express oneself through thoughts and they threaten the foundation of a commercial media system. A large percentage of the blogosphere is still influenced by opinion-based writing while journalists get to the bottom of the story and bend over backward to get the other side. But bloggers can stick with a story forever and it is not expected to be accurate. Expressing one’s opinion is different from doing objective news reporting.
Bloggers were not considered as a journalist because first off, they haven’t studied the principle of journalism but they must not be punished for indiscretion because, we’re living in a democratic country, we are Democrats. Everyone is entitled to his/her opinion. But bloggers should be accountable for the content that they produce. Asserting lies about a situation or someone should not be a part of the practice. They should not be considered as journalist because they’re only blogging, some of them do it only for fun and the others are mostly opinionated. Bloggers should also be aware of the facts but if many bloggers are looser with facts, freer with opinion, and the goal of many of their blogs is to attract attention through strong statements and opinions; I think it’s a good recipe for libel.
Yes, we have our rights to express what we feel. But freedom of speech does not protect us from a libelous statement. Generally, it occurs when one party publishes or broadcasts false information about someone else, causing an injury to one’s reputation. Anyone who slanders or libels another may be penalized. Vulgar and indecent speech and fighting words are not protected under the freedom of expression clause. But you know if its libel if the statement is false. If you believe it to be true, you need to have a valid evidence. If the statement made is true, there can be no claim for libel or slander.
What makes a journalist a journalist?
If you Google the word Journalist, it says “a person who writes for newspapers or magazines or prepares news to be broadcast on radio or television.” In order to be a journalist, you need to have a degree in journalism or must take up BA Mass Communication, BA Communication, or any course inline in it. A journalist learns not only to write but how to reliably collect and verify the information they share. They also learned how to analyze the information to what is significant and what is not. And journalist has quite literally a code of ethics to follow. A journalist checks their sources and also has their articles checked for bias and false information.
“Journalists are different from other people. We’re trained to report on all sides without fear or favor. We’re trained to serve the people, not the powers that be — which includes governments and our unions and our political beliefs and the nice people who sign our cheques.” – Tim Knight
The journalist was reserved for people who worked for a traditional media outlet.
Blogging and journalism are two different things and should be viewed differently. Logically speaking, bloggers and journalist spelled out differently so Merriam Webster gives different definitions for each.