2009: Year of the Shadow Media

7 Jan

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Rebecca MacKinnon

Rebecca MacKinnon

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uploaded by rezwan

Kirk Lapointe, Managing Editor of the Vancouver Sun pointed me to something interesting today.

Several weeks ago, BusinessWeek columnist Jon Fine shared a term in one of his predictions for 2009 that was intriguing because of how it describes a growing phenomenon in media today … the rise of the shadow media. The shadow media are the professional journalists, writers, editors and thought leaders who have been displaced either by choice or necessity as part of the upheaval that traditional media has been going through over the past few years. While before, these content creators may have just moved to a new role within traditional media (as Josh Quittner did when Business2.0 magazine folded) – but today more and more they are branching out on their own.

But what the shadow media needs is to be connected to people on the scene, a volunteer army of people who are at the right (or wrong) place at the right time.  Whether they are twitterers in Gaza or Flirkr users in Manhatten, the shadow media could build a network of news gathering and editorial professionals that could rival or overtake their former employers.   …An interesting idea.

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