Citizen journalism: Caveat emptor

Seems that in the brave new world of citizen journalism and social media, some self-appointed scribes can be as irresponsible as ones who do it for pay.

It’s all over the Web now about the bogus report that Apple’s Steve Jobs had a heart attack. One of the most unfortunate things is that the report negatively affected Apple’s stock. And it also calls into question the filtering that CNN’s iReport, where the report surfaced, and other forums use on such items. They probably can be held liable for allowing such items to be posted on their sites.

Reminds me of a remark that CBS newsman Bob Schieffer made recently at the Atlanta Press Club. Talking about political coverage online, Schieffer said some Web sites remind him of the fellow on the street corner with a sign that says, “The end is near.” “That may well be,” Schieffer said, “but what evidence do you have?”

For the record, I treat this blog and my Twitter posts (under “bsteve76”) as something I would feel good about reading myself. But elsewhere online, such is not the case, and never will be.


About Steve Burns

I live in the Atlanta area. I also lived for many years in Southern California. I'm into mainstream media, social media, sports, business and politics. I worked for AOL's Patch, but this is my personal blog. I'm on Twitter (@bsteve76), Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest. See ya 'round!
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