Readers supplant editors when journalists blog, study suggests

Journalists who blog become more responsive to story ideas provided by readers and less reliant on assignments from editors, according to Paul Bradshaw of the Online Journalism Blog. Bradshaw, who is also senior lecturer in online journalism and magazines at Birmingham City University’s School of Media, analyzed 200 responses from journalists who voluntarily completed a questionnaire about how blogging affects their work. Other findings about journalists who blog:

  • They access a wider list of sources and become less dependent on government, pressure groups, public relations firms and “diary events” for stories.
  • They post often and quickly, relying on readers to alert them to mistakes and missing or unclear information.
  • Print-based journalists are more likely to gather and publish multimedia material and broadcast journalists are more likely to gather and publish  material beyond what is required for traditional radio or television newscasts.
  • They publish stories and information that would not be considered for publication or broadcast in traditional journalism formats.
  • They develop a more personal “voice,” writing in a looser, less formal and more compact style.

For more results and information about survey respondents, see Blogging Journalists, Parts 1-4.