Content isn’t a stagnant pool of algae-covered information anymore. Audiences are now actively participating in collaborative and continuous building and extending of existing content. People are no longer bound by the fixed narrative of old media, but able to manipulate their experiences alongside millions of others. Online collaboration isn’t only about changing the way you view content, but allowing others to see completely new events and ideas.
Citizen journalism is this spreading of information, which anyone can participate in, whereby news can be shared through multiple, informal channels. Unlike the news distribution of the past, people don’t have to wait for their news to be thrown to their doorstep; they can easily and immediately find what interests them.
YouTube has been greatly influential to the prominence of citizen journalism in recent history. It allows people to post video of without the filtering of networks and producers. People in new media are participants, producers, editors and audiences all mixed together to be active ‘produsers’ of the internet. YouTube allows people to not only share, watch and comment on videos, but to work off the content of others, meaning the content never dies, but continues to morph into new pieces of work for others to do the same. The beauty of this change is that it has only begun to develop, and will continue to benefit audiences in new ways as it does.
YouTube’s tagline ‘Broadcast Yourself’ is no longer a simple invitation to video yourself making a vlog, it’s a challenge to add to the collective knowledge of the world; Broadcast(ing by) Yourself.