Thursday, November 05, 2015

Where For Art Thou, Dan Gillmor?

An essay in today's Chronicle email belaboring the lack of "journalism" training for the masses reminds me of the work of one of this blog's patron saints, Dan Gillmor.

Dan predicted the technology shift that would force closed door events like the Olympics to open up in the face of what would become social media.  His last book, We The Media, covered what Jennifer Brannock Cox found dismaying in 2015.  He did it in 2004.

Cox was dismayed at some of her social media classroom experiments led to very unintended consequences.  Her "commenters"  spent more time in snark than expanding the discussion.  She comes to this as one of her major points:

Unfortunately, social media is not the most reliable source of reporting, and our "journalists" are not trained. When anyone can post anything any time without restraint, the perpetuation of false and subjective information is inevitable.

Back in his transition from Cal to Arizona State, Gillmor made a huge point that one of the future cornerstone courses of media education should be just that:  a gen ed course on media that talked as much about how to consume it as how to generate it.

Cox's essay brings that right back to the forefront.  To which I ask the question of my media & comm colleagues: are you creating that course?

From the past is prologue school, another golden oldie from Dan.

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