Clay Shirky at Harvard’s Shorenstein Center


Ethan Zuckerman liveblogged Clay Shirky’s talk on accountability journalism at Harvard’s Shorenstein Center:

His fear is that the model we’ve had through the 20th century to produce this accountability journalism is irretrievably broken. First, this model was based on an imbalanced set of intentions between newspapers and their funders. “Best Buy isn’t particularly interested in subsidizing the Baghdad newsroom – they’re paying for it because they don’t have other options” for reaching the public through display ads. Newspapers were able to systematically overcharge for advertising space because there weren’t many other options for advertiers.

via …My heart’s in Accra » Clay Shirky and accountability journalism.

As did David Weinberger:

There are three ways to create things accessible to the public. Private companies. NGOs. Social/peer production where people get together and do it. #3 had been confined to picnics, etc. Now it’s becoming a big part of the ecosystem. E.g., Pro Publica. Wikileaks. Open source. “The Internet makes all commercial models of journalism harder to sustain…and social models much, much easier to sustain.” “We’re seeing a re-balancing of the landscape” where all three of these modes of production will be operating. We want experiments across all three of these.

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