Dialogue or Diatribe

The internet age's audience behaves differently. They demand a more active role, and have managed to create their own form of journalism- citizen journalism.

A way multimedia publications incorporate citizen journalism is through comments. For the first time, the entire audience has the ability to leave feedback and comment on articles immediately.

Commentary and feedback offer a more interactive relationship between journalists and their audience. This form of participation is great, but it can be dangerous.

In many instances, comments can lead to slandering toward the journalist or the person (thing, event, etc.) the article is about.

How can this be prevented?

McBride suggests that online publications should provide guidelines to their citizen journalists. Your guidelines should be specific and well-thought out. “If you don’t have a good contract people will act how they want to act” says McBride.

An example of these guidelines includes the following:

The bottom line is to be specific.


See Kelly McBride's article on Dialogue or Diatribe for a shocking example.

McBride 		    article