Are Bloggers Journalists?
Am I a journalist? Well, I have written stuff for Voxilla and have been known to exhibit journalist tendancies in the past, but does that make me one? Some of the VoIP bloggers are journalists in the conventional sense of the word, i.e. they publish articles printed on dead trees.
There’s an article on ZDNet that suggests blogers should be treated like journalists, at least when it comes to some basic First Amendment type issues like “being compelled to reveal sources”–something a proper journalist could not be legally compelled to do.
Blogging is a form of written expression, which last I checked was protected by the First Amendment in the United States. My blog is my own personal press. Okay, only a couple hundred of you read it on a regular basis, but it’s my press, damn it!
Of course, the word “journalist” also has other connotations, like proper reporting techniques, fact checking, and so on. A few bloggers act more like conventional journalists, most are just spewing forth their own opinion (myself included), perhaps with some facts thrown in for good measure.
While I don’t think we’re “journalists” in the conventional sense of the word, bloggers do act a bit like journalists and should be afforded the same protections.