By TOM STITES on Nieman Journalism Labs, Dec. 9, 2011 –
“It’s stocktaking time — five years since the Big March to the digital journalism future stepped off in 2006, strutting toward what was widely trumpeted as inevitable triumph. Auspicious events amplified the cheering:
- The City University of New York launched its Graduate School of Journalism with an innovative curriculum and hired the outspoken citizen-journalism advocate Jeff Jarvis to direct a new interactive media program and teach entrepreneurship.
- Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society widened its interest in the growing edges of news by adding to its roster of fellows Dan Gillmor, author of the seminal 2004 participatory journalism book We the Media, and the protoblogger Doc Searls.
- In his widely followed PressThink blog, New York University journalism Prof. Jay Rosen headlined an item The People Formerly Known as the Audience; it immediately became a defining meme for journalism on the web, which empowers everyone to participate.
- The Knight Foundation, the premier funder of journalism projects, kicked off its $5-million-a-year News Challenge grants program.
So, five years later, how’s the Big March working out for journalism — and for the democracy that’s so dependent on it?