Reconnoitering the role of (citizen) journalism ethics in the emerging networked public sphere

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Ecquid Novi, 2014, 35 (3), pp. 4 - 22
Issue Date:
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© 2014, iMasa. Citizen journalism is emerging as a powerful phenomenon across Africa. The rise of digitally networked technologies is reshaping reporting across the continent. This change is technological (with social media platforms enabling new forms of publishing, receiving and discussing stories) as well as cultural, with idiosyncratic conventions emerging on these platforms. This study surveys the ethical beliefs of citizen journalists in several sub-Saharan African countries. The research showed that they are driven by a sense of social responsibility and a wish to inform their readers and the general public. Citizen journalists show a clear anti-authoritarian strain and an antipathy towards government regulation, yet most see themselves as subject to the same ethics that guide traditional journalism.
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