I am rushing to finish a book on the significance of WikiLeaks and the emergence of more networked political journalism. I am not writing this as a wiki-type project but, just for fun, here is a random lump of an early draft [it’s not all this pretentious…]:
The Internet and networked news communications are also changing the idea of ‘news’ itself. This may be a more profound change than simply a rearrangement of the structure of the industry or production. News as the reporting of ‘breaking stories’ or new events is no longer controlled by journalism. Now it is happening all around us in networks where citizens and journalists act as curators and facilitators as well as in the traditional roles as reporters, analysts and investigators. It can be accidental as when CCTV records a plane hitting the Pentagon. Or it can be automatic, as with the reporting of much financial market data. Potentially, anything that happens, anything expressed, can instantly be made visible as a communication act by anyone and transmitted anywhere. That loss of control over news for mainstream media has challenged traditional ideas for framing journalistic discourse. WikiLeaks is an example of the new forms of journalism that are emerging from and reshaping the news ecology and the nature of news itself. For example, classic ideas of objectivity or impartiality constructed in the age of mass mainstream media in the 19th and 20th centuries are being replaced by notions of accountability and interactivity.
The book will be published by Polity later this autumn (touch wood)