“Citizens” — people who are not professional journalists — can use a platform like iReport to legitimately report news. Remember those eyewitness reports from the Minnesota bridge collapse?
The problem is — and this is something that advocates of citizen journalism typically overlook — that if a platform is open, and anyone can participate, that means not only can well-intentioned citizens participate but so can bad actors, spammers, liars, cheats, and thieves.
That’s the double-edged swords of open systems — you have to take the bad with the good. In fact, you have to EXPECT the bad with the good. The ideology of open participation has revolutionized media, but that same ideology is often quite naive.
Or ZD Net:
I can’t say that this investigation is unexpected. I came across the story very early on in the day on Friday (via Digg) and after about 10 minutes worth of digging around was certain that it was false...
It is strange that it seems to take shorting on a falling Apple share, huge stock market losses, or a bank being wiped out before issues of trust and authenticity go centre stage?
Here's one good question today though:
"Your company is now bankrupt, our economy is now in a state of crisis, but you get to keep $480 million. I have a very basic question for you. Is this fair?"
Henry Waxman, chairman of the House of Representatives oversight committee, questioning Lehman Brothers CEO Richard Fuld over the bank's collapse last month.