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The major advice that a journalist can get from “What is Journalism’s Place in Social Media” report (Nieman Foundation for Jouranlism at Harvard) is using social media as “tools”. It can undeniably help in getting information fast and generally have full access to any type of information needed. However there is one significant flaw, namely ACCURACY. To be precise accuracy of information posted in social media is questionable.

Considering that the majority of social networks’ users are not specifically trained in journalism they frequently do not pay attention to major journalistic values: accuracy, proportionality, and fairness. Sometimes they are not even aware of their existance. That is why it is often hard to distinguish reliable news from gossips. In order to be fully aware of the source’s reliability you have to follow its activities on-line for a while. The observations will help you to realize whether this source can be trusted.

Another noticeable point of this report in the chapter “Confessing Errors in a Digital Age” is that “mistakes should not only be promptly corrected but also explicitly acknowledged in the story”. It is obvious that on-line media has a clear advantage in the speed of correcting mistakes in comparison with printed one, which requires printing of refutation to point out the mistakes. However the problem is that if a reader on-line would receive the wrong message from the piece of news that he had read and he would not be notified about it this wrong message can spread.

Even though the digital media is slowly taking the lead in news “reporting” professional journalism still has something to hold on to:

“Accuracy is our goal, and candor is our defense”
The Washington Post

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Judging by my experience using Twitter for professional development can get really confusing. Mainly because of overload of informaton. I subscribed for getting tweets of internationally recognized newspapers like The Economist and news agency Associated Press (oh, I have to say followed them 🙂 ) But I could hardly “find my way” through the amount of information to get really necessary bits of it.

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  • Comments Off on Contribution of social networks to professional development

Many people perceive social networks as a major way to communicate with people on-line. However, according to the article “Social networking for professional growth” by Dr. Masha Petrova they can also contribute largely to the professional development.

http://www.simple-talk.com/sysadmin/general/social-networking-for-professional-growth/

In the article the author elaborates on how to use such social networks as Twitter, Linkedin, YouTube and blogs. Each of these media tools have their own advantages, but the common thing is that they give you an opportunity to communicate with proffessionals and demonstrate your own knowledge.

The major argument of the author in the chapter “Living networks” is that network is a basis of living networks organization. Basically he states that living social systems are “self-generating networks of communications”.

The importance of networks of communications can not be underestimated, as it is an origin of culture.

Definitely as network is a structure of some elements the boundaries between these elements should be identified. According to Capra “social networks’ boundaries are boundaires of identity”.

One of the major concepts in this chapter is self-generation of living networks. Capra states that they are functional, which means that “living networks continually (re)create themselves by transforming or replacing their components”. But even though the network structure transforms constantly, the “web-like pattern” stays untouched.

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  • Comments Off on Encouraging Participation: NewEurasia.net case

One of the major advantages of on-line media is possibility of expressing and sharing opinions on certain matters and not simply be a part of passive audience. However the important factor is the structure of the media site. It is important to encourage participation of readers. The site that is doing really well in this respect is NewEurasia.net. Many articles end with the question similar to “What do you think about it”?
That is a great way to involve the reader into a debate.

The 4th chapter of “We Media” report is very informative regarding the basic reasons why people are so eager to participate in groups (building reputation in a certain community, creating connections with people who have the same interests and passions, getting information and simply for entertainment). Apart from that it raises the issue of participation rules.

Basically participation rules are derived from several sources: technology and community. Technological aspect implies being registered in order to participate, whereas community-based rules regulate participants’ “behavior” on-line. Even though these rules impose some restrictions I firmly believe in their necessity. Too many times I stumbled upon rude comments, which can simply offend somebody even by chance. Furthermore sometimes they are even aimed at it. Such behavior is inappropriate within a community off-line as well as on-line. That is the reason why moderators are needed, who will control what is being posted in all the forums, blogs, etc.

When it comes to me I am not registered in any on-line groups. But when it is possible I use the chance to leave comments and share my opinion (of course only when registration is not obligatory 🙂 ).

It is fascinating how people are interconnected. Today in the NIT calss we interviewed each other to find out what connections we could possibly have. Surprisingly there were many.

All of us  study in the same university and are taking NIT class (definitely :-)) Many of us even attend the same cinema and chose same places for leisure. My group mate Elvira also prefers walking rather than taking a bus as I do. Kamilla joins us (Elvira and me) in our dancers “club”. Most of the people in NIT class like different kinds of music, and mostly girls go for rock. Kamilla, Sabina and me love travelling. Among the countries which the three of us visited are Russia and Turkey. There is also Darkhan who “avoids” social networks much like I do.

Many of us (mostly girls) enjoy reading books. Even though we have different preferences I found out that Olga likes detectives, and I adore Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes. Isn’t it fascinating how much a group of people who barely know each other have in common?

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