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Dialog on Socratic Media

<![CDATA[Lots of good stuff floating around the issue of collaborative editing, which I wrote about yesterday….
Steve Outing has a long and thoughtful piece at Editor & Publisher on the various civic journalist projects going on in newspapers. I particularly like his subhead “It takes a village, and an editor.”
Colin Brayton chimes in at theredactor (The Red Actor, but in this case, the condensed name is most fitting):

Editors are just people trying to figure out what other people need and want to know, and filtering raw data accordingly. We strive to give as full a picture as possible so you’ll turn to our rag first, but it’s an ideal, not really an achievable goal. Really, in the fifteen minutes you have to absorb news, you don’t want everything, you want the important part. And some parts will be more important to some people than they will to others. Still, the more input into the system, the closer we can get to all the news that’s fit to print. That’s why I set up a blog as a model for collective brainstorming for our little operation. No one uses, it of course: We are small enough to just yell things across the room, and journos are a bunch of Luddites, but I find it very useful and try to leverage it to expand my own consciousness of what’s going on, anyhow.

OhMyNews, the Korean citizen journalism company that has become the fifth largest media source in the country is mentioned by several folks. They pay a few bucks for most articles and a professional staff of 38 (only 15 edit full time while the others research and write features) edits and places the stories on sites and on television. OhMyNews is making its first profit this year—all of about $325,000, but that’s remarkable given it was invented from whole cloth. It’s the model we’ve had in mind for for a long time, though we found out about OhMyNews after we launched, but, so far, the Google ads aren’t even covering the hosting costs….
OhMyNews works because of the selectivity Colin describes, it lends clarity in the midst of the action, which is why every redaction is a value judgment that needs to be considered carefully before and after the fact, so that the process improves. Simply throwing more people at the challenge of covering the news isn’t sufficient to create useful information that people can use in their decision making.]]>