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The death of a citizen journalist in Libya reminds me how easy citizen journalists have it in the United States. U.S. citizen journalists never have to fear for their lives. They never have to face censorship or reprimand, as long as they follow the laws of the land and the ethics of the profession. They can go out in the field, ask questions and write stories they believe will inform their neighbors about the happenings in their communities and the actions of their local governments. Such wasn't the case for Mohammad Nabbous, described as the "face of citizen journalism in Libya," who reportedly was shot dead by forces of Libyan leader Moammar Khadafy on Saturday, March 19. Nabbous was credited with setting up Libya al-Hurra ("freedom") TV, which broadcast raw feeds and commentary from Benghazi on Livestream. Nabbous isn't the only one who has been put in danger in ... (more)

Why Local Newspapers Require Radical Reinvention to Escape a Very Grim Future

Local newspapers and business-to-business publications face similar challenges as drastic drops in ad revenue drive equally drastic drops in relevant and compelling content.  But for newspapers, ad revenue declines are exacerbated because the highly profitable classified advertising sections have almost disappeared as readers flock to the Internet.  Moreover, business-to-business magazines that are well positioned still offer uniquely valuable niche content that helps readers succeed. Their readers still count on them. That’s not so true for our local dailies. I believe that the potential nail in the coffin for local newspapers is the ease with which readers can access national and international content thanks to the Internet.  Conversely, I believe that the potential salvation for local newspapers is to become resoundingly local. Local Newspaper News Monopoly Disa... (more)

Citizen Journalism as a Catalyst for Transforming Media

New Media on Ulitzer Another incident on the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) hits YouTube, and the world is once again asking the question if BART Police are using too much force, the police acted appropriately, or if BART passengers simply recorded a snapshot in time that could be interpreted at a later date. In the recent past, to find out what happened during an incident such as the most recent BART scuffle, you would be dependent on a newspaper's beat journalist to hang around a police station. He'd get a copy of the official police report, perhaps talk with one of his friends on the force, and transcribe what he gathered. Now news and media are real time. You can get Twitter tweets and video feeds from mobile phones, laptop computers, and reporters on the scene with CNN (or other international news sources). In many cases even established news outlets are starti... (more)

Copenhagen Climate Summit Ends – What Did They Accomplish?

"The Heads of State, Heads of Government, Ministers, and other heads of delegation present at the United Nations Climate Change Conference 2009 in Copenhagen,… Have agreed on this Copenhagen Accord which is operational immediately." And so ends the Copenhagen Climate Summit. But what did the participants agree to? Was it substantial enough to make a difference? Did they silence the skeptics? Will Sarah Palin finally believe Alaska is melting into the North Pacific? German Chancellor Angela Merkel defends the Copenhagen climate summit. In an interview with the German news source Bild am Sonntag Merkel stated "Copenhagen is a first step toward a new world climate order - no more, but also no less. Anyone who just badmouths Copenhagen now is engaging in the business of those who are applying the brakes rather than moving forward." The climate conference ended Saturday w... (more)

Legendary Citizen Journalist Ron Ross Becomes Ulitzer Author

Dr. Ron Ross joined today Ulitzer as a citizen journalist columnist and blogger. His first Ulitzer column "Citizen Journalists are Passionate about Freedom of the Press" was publish under Ulitzer's Citizen Journalism topic. Ron Ross' first job was as a newspaper delivery boy for the Omaha World Herald in Council Bluffs, Iowa. He earned his first byline front-page story as a writer for his high school newspaper. While in high school, he served as a Citizen Journalist by reporting all of his high school sports scores to a local radio station. After high school, he entered college and graduated from Nebraska Christian College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1965. He pastored church in Kansas, and then took his wife and two children to Zambia (in central Africa) for seven years of in-service to his denomination as a missionary. Upon return to the United States he pasto... (more)

Little Shelter Animal Rescue Holiday Donation Drive

December 22, 2009, Huntington, NY - Little Shelter Animal Rescue & Adoption Center www.littleshelter.com, one of Long Island's oldest no-kill shelters dedicated to saving all companion animals in need, announced today a Holiday Donation Drive.  Little Shelter is under financial pressure and must cut back on services for needy animals due to a 30% decrease in donations, the 2009 closing of two Long Island shelters (Bide-A-Wee in Wantagh and Animal Haven in Flushing), and the bad economy, unemployment and foreclosures causing more animals to be surrendered to the shelter. Without holiday donations, Little Shelter will be forced to cut back on medical care for its 400 cats and 50 dogs and will reduce essential community animal care services. Little Shelter Helps Needy Families Keep their Cherished Pets at Home Known for its community outreach and the rescue of countless... (more)

Handbook for Citizen Journalists – COMING SOON!

A tremendous amount of research, writing and editing has gone into this landmark book for citizen journalists being written by the National Association of Citizen Journalists’ Ron Ross and Susan Cormier. However, the book is not finished. In fact, it is still undergoing some serious rewrites and additions. Briefly, Ross writes from his perspective as a former publisher and hyper-local news website owner in need of citizen journalists. Cormier writes from her 28 years of experience in the media arts, including stints as a broadcast writer, legislative bureau chief, city editor and now citizen journalist. But before the book goes to layout and design, YOUR INPUT IS REQUESTED! Please take a look at the outline for the book and then click here to take a survey concerning this product. YOUR INPUT is VALUABLE BEYOND WORDS. We want this book to answer the questions that ci... (more)

Why I Started the NACJ

Citizen Journalism on Ulitzer Citizen Journalism on Ulitzer - The National Association of Citizen Journalists was formed out of a need that I discovered as the publisher of a weekly paper in suburban Denver. For more than a decade, I published a popular, free entertainment weekly tabloid in Douglas County, Colo., that had lots of fun stuff to read and to do and lots of ads, but very little news. In 2001, I started a section in my paper that featured news items concerning local people and events. I sought the help of several active citizens expecting them to provide news for these pages. Many that I talked to thought it was a great idea and promised they would send me news. No one did – well, almost no one. Most of the news in the section came from two or three public information officers bought and paid for by the offices they were serving. The rest of it I gleaned ... (more)

Enis Berberoğlu Named Editor-in-Chief of Hürriyet

New Media on Ulitzer I left Chicago late the night of December 30, via Turkish Airlines to spend the New Year with my mom in Turkey. Our plane arrived in Istanbul the next evening. There were five hours left until the New Year and the traffic from the airport to the hotel was bumper-to-bumper. I saw this on a CNN International program. I don't think there is another country on earth that loves their Papa Noel (Santa Claus), Christmas trees and Christmas music more than Turkey. And I am not sure if there is another Muslim country out there that is in love with Christmas like the Turks, I doubt it. I had an early New Year's Eve dinner by myself at Hüsrev, a local rice and beans restaurant. Mom and my sister would arrive from Eskişehir by train the next day. I woke up early in my hotel room, picked up my morning paper, went downstairs for breakfast before heading out... (more)

Newspaper and Magazine Circulations Will Get Hit Hard By "New Media" Tsunami

New Media on Ulitzer Take a plastic world globe and place a pin on roughly where Silicon Valley is. Then tie a piece of yarn to the pin and extend it to any country around the Globe. With a quick visual conversion, the length of the yarn shows the approximate number of years for that particular country to get hit with the "new-media" tsunami forming in the United States. What am I talking about? Europe and Asia Historically Followed U.S. Two Years Behind Well, traditionally for any technology trend to reach from the United States to Europe and Asia took a couple of years. If we observe the recent "made in the USA" tech trends, let's say virtualization or cloud computing, which we happen to follow very closely, we see a two-year delayed adoption rate in Europe. We also see Asia and the rest of the Far East catching up surprisingly faster than the rest of the world. ... (more)

Help Haiti

Haiti Earthquake on Ulitzer What Haiti has been through is unthinkable. The White House is urging us to contribute through The Red Cross, or to have $10 charged to your cell phone by texting “HAITI” to “90999. It also suggests finding more ways to help through the Center for International Disaster Information. ... (more)