‘News-crowd­ing the lat­est trend in new me­dia space’

The Sunday Guardian - - Front Page -

News-crowd­ing is an emerg­ing con­cept in the coun­try and is “sweep­ing the new me­dia space”, pro­vid­ing a par­al­lel plat­form to issues re­lated to farm­ers and marginalised peo­ple, claim some. Ac­cord­ing to San­tosh Mohan, as­sis­tant pro­fes­sor at the Cen­tre for Me­dia Stud­ies of Jawa­har­lal Nehru Univer­sity ( JNU), news-crowd­ing in the con­text of jour­nal­ism is seen as a model of distribu­tive re­port­ing. It is also con­sid­ered as a “sourc­ing strat­egy” for funds by which an or­gan­i­sa­tion broad­ens its reach and con­tent. News-crowd­ing im­plies crowd wis­dom, and crowd fund­ing to gen­er­ate con­tent. Paran­joy Guha Thakurta, a for­mer editor who has turned to news-crowd­ing on new me­dia plat­form with his new pro­ject “TheAFiles.in”, said, “I am seek­ing the help of news-crowd­ing to ful­fil my projects which are in­tended to take on issues which tra­di­tional me­dia houses will oth­er­wise not raise. I am com­ing up with a web­site which will be like a repos­i­tory of in­for­ma­tion with­out the in­ten­tion of profit gen­er­a­tion.”

Pratik Sinha, co-founder of Alt News, which claims to ex­pose fake news, said “News- crowd­ing worked for my pro­ject which has been in­volved in de­bunk­ing fake news in the coun­try. The new so­cial me­dia, com­bined with the ex­per­tise and funds raised from the crowd, has helped many peo­ple like me in car­ry­ing out true jour­nal­ism.”Speak­ing on the news-crowd­ing trend, Sinha said “You might have no­ticed that the farm­ers’ protest in Delhi was al­most un­heard of un­til the ag­i­ta­tion was re­ported by newscrowd­ing based mul­ti­me­dia sites.” Pankaj Jain, who runs SMHoaxSlayer, said: “On­line me­dia por­tals can’t ex­ist with­out the con­tri­bu­tions of users as it is dif­fi­cult to carry on self-funded por­tals which re­quire lots of re­sources in dis­sem­i­nat­ing news. Dig­i­tal me­dia has al­tered the way tra­di­tional news out­lets re­ceive their in­for­ma­tion and how con­sumers get their news. Crowd- sourc­ing is in­creas­ingly con­sid­ered as a prob­lem solv­ing approach that taps into the knowl­edge, en­ergy, and cre­ativ­ity of a global, on­line com­mu­nity.”

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