With citizen journalism bursting into the media spotlight in the last 5 years, their have been mixed emotions about it. Some people, like me, are astonished and empowered by it’s strength, sheer volume, and it’s potential to add to the democratic practice. However on the other end of the spectrum we have the like of Tony Abbott and co. who believe that too much importance is placed on citizen journalism, therefore undermining both ethical standards and professional journalism (Jurrat 2011).
The Prime Minister’s recent dismissal of social media as “internet graffiti” only confirmed what most young Australians already thought, that Abbot is incompetent and out of touch. Take note Abbot, because Obama is killing the social media game i.e mean tweets, between two ferns, things everyone does but doesn’t talk about. Abbott’s poor grasp on technology was evident with the mocking and sarcastic twist of his #Imstickingwithtony campaign, so you’d think by now that he would start to realise this participatory culture’s strength. Now I’m not saying we want him to start taking selfies and saying “lol”, but rather an acknowledgement that our nations leader is taking our political concerns seriously. After all, we are producing, sharing and engaging with each other at such a rate that Abbott should probably start sleeping with one eye open.
Mitew, T 2015, Lecture on Citizen Journalism, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, 27th April.