Defining Journalism

          In today’s advanced world, journalism has more faces than ever before. News is now accessed twenty-four hours a day. Smart phones, laptops and tablets made the news mobile. With this ever-growing accessibility comes a very large amount of outlets offering some variation of news. This makes distinguishing reliable and unbiased news sources quite challenging.
          More and more people are relying on alternative sources for their reporting. Blogs are more popular than ever and even social media sites are offering short reports in real time. Television is no exception. Programs like “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report” are appealing to younger generations. Because so many new options sprout every day, using so many different mediums, it has become very difficult to define what exactly qualifies as journalism. Although many rely on these sources for their news, much of their content not only includes, but revolves around opinion. This kind of commentary can at times be very useful and the analysis can be insightful and relevant, but by definition, it is not true journalism. Should the definition be evolved to one more favorable of current day trends? This would certainly be convenient, but who else would fall under the definition’s umbrella? Would Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck then be considered journalists? What about Howard Stern? These figures are most definitely commentators rather than journalists. There is no simple fix that would point out who is a journalist and who is not, because there are now so many changing and growing components that any one definition is truly impossible. Today, the task falls on the shoulders of the reader, listener, or viewer to make reasonable choices concerning what is news, and what is entertainment.

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