The first dialog which we had during New Media class was with man called John Coster. He is the editor of Citizens’ Eye (Citizen Journalism Platform for citizen news). This organisation is local and located in the Great Britain, Leicester. More than 800 volunteers are writing articles, having dialogs, making movies. To become Citizens’ Eye journalist you don’t need to have a diploma or to be 18 years old. There are a lot of young people (some of them are less than 10 years old). At the day then Citizens’ Eye news are published into local newspaper, the same day’s afternoon there are no copies left. It is the main idea why I decided to write about this dialog. I was curious why it is so popular…
It was really nice to see somebody like John Coster (man who never expected his idea to become so successful) relaxed, sitting and drinking coffee. Now he believes in platform’s future and he can talk about citizen’s eye over and over. He tried to pay attention to all and every single student in the class. If we had any questions we were able to share it with the class and editor. Despite the fact that connection wasn’t good, we still could ask question using Twitter or after conference contact him. As well he shared future plans – one of it is to open News museum. We finished our conference with Tina Barton who is working in Citizens’ Eye together with John Coster. She is teaching the youngest volunteers (who are still studying at school) how to use media and electronics. Not everybody could admit this, but I think it is really necessary because every year IT becomes more and more important.
Answering the question ‘’why Citizens’ Eye became so popular’’. I think the most important is that journalists are not scared to express their self and tell neutral opinion about various topics. Usually journalist can feel pressure from editor or somebody even higher – he can’t write anything bad about sponsors or about the best friend of boss who as well is a politician. In our days people are used to say: everything what you can’t buy for the money you can buy for a little bit bigger amount of the money. That’s why the idea to join so many unpaid volunteers for one aim can look shocking. To motivate and to keep in touch with all of them is almost impossible. However, person who becomes a member of organisation can look at his job like a challenge.
Also, the topics of the articles are very wide. It is hardly surprising because every journalist can choose the theme which he likes and which attracts him depending on his age range. The implication is that every reader can find something personal; even it is not attracting majority of the consumer.
All in all, because of the strength of purpose Citizens’ Eye became so popular. For the future I wish to open News museum and to successfully expand this journalism platform as much as possible.
Pic source: http://www.citizenseye.org