Citizen journalism in Iowa

Cross-posted at Political Forecast.

Maybe I’ve missed something in my absences from blogging over the past few months, but has the Register ever really done a serious news or feature piece on Iowa’s bloggers and citizen journalists?  I mean, I know we threaten their credibility and their readership by getting scoops, insight, and news out faster sometimes–not to mention that our commentary is sometimes more consistent and better written than their columnists’–but it almost seems like there is an intent to ignore the contributions that bloggers in Iowa have had both before the caucuses and in previous elections or issues.  Today, in their features section, they profile one citizen journalist who has been vlogging for (she had to audition to get the gig) and one guy who has been doing it for MTV.  Don’t get me wrong, their efforts are valuable…but what about the folks who do this on their own time and don’t necessarily live off of it?

The folks at Iowa Independent have been doing regular news and political reporting since May, and other bloggers on both sides of the aisle have been part of the debate and policy discussion in Iowa politics for a few years now.  Other papers across the state, as well as national papers and news magazines, have highlighted our growth and commented on our contributions.

Simply put, why can’t Iowa’s paper of record recognize or examine the Iowa online community for what it is and report back to the people of Iowa on it?  I don’t want the media attention, the scrutiny, the interviews, the publicity; I just think that some of us deserve the recognition for the contributions we make.  Two of my former colleagues at Iowa Independent have already talked a bit about this subject (see Chase Martyn’s initial post here and read Ben Weyl’s abbreviated response here) and I think it is one worth further discussion as we continue to build Iowa’s blogosphere.

  • speaking for myself

    I like skating below the Register’s radar.

    But you are right, they should be paying attention to Iowa Independent and other Iowa bloggers.

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