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INFLUENCE OF CITIZEN JOURNALISM ON THE PRACTICE OF JOURNALISM

Abstract: The study investigated the influence of citizen journalism on the practice of journalism in Osun state. The study was anchored on Technology Determinism Theory. A survey research method was employed while questionnaire was used as data collection instrument to elicit responses from respondents who re journalists in Osun State. The data collected were analysis using frequency and percentage with the aids of tables. The findings of the study were that citizen journalism offer access to multiple sources. Equally, majority of the respondents (52%) pointed out that increase in fake news has influenced the practice of journalism than any other thing. Also, many of the respondents (60%) claimed that the major challenge posed by the citizen journalism is that they competing for the same audience and advertisements. Similarly, majority of the respondents (48%) noted that citizen journalism is doing more harm than good to journalism to a very high extent. It was recommended that member of the public should possess media literacy skill to be able to think critically about the information they consume while journalists should employ Fact-Checking Network.


TABLE OF CONTENTS

Title Page

Certification

Dedication

Acknowledgement

Table of Contents

Abstract

CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION

1.1       Background to the Study

1.2       Statement of Problem

1.3      Objective of the study

1.4       Research questions

1.5       Significance of the Study

1.6       Scope of the study

1.7     Operational Definition of Terms

CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW

2.1       CONCEPTUAL REVIEW

2.1.1    Concept of Citizen Journalism

2.1.3    The Status of Citizen Journalism in Nigeria

2.1.3    Journalism Practice

2.1.4    Rise of Violence caused by Fake news

2.1.5    Social Media and Citizen Journalism

2.1.6    Facebook and Citizen Journalism

2.1.7  The Rate of the Spread of Fake News among Nigerians on both Social and Conventional

          Media

2.1.8    Factors that Influence Citizen Journalism

2.2       EMPIRICAL REVIEW

3.3       THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK

3.3.1    Technology Determinism Theory

CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

3.0       Introduction

3.1       Research Design

3.2       Research Method

3.3       Population of the Study

3.4       Sample Size

3.5       Sampling Technique

3.6       Data Collection Instrument

3.7       Validity and Reliability of Research Instrument

3.8       Method of Data Collection

3.9       Method Data Analysis

CHAPTER FOUR: DATA ANALYSIS AND PRESENTATION

4.1       Data Analysis

4.2       Discussion of Findings

CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

5.1       Summary

5.2       Conclusion

5.3       Recommendations

            References

             Appendix


CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1       Background to the Study

Information and communication technologies (ICT) have improved the current communication process and the complete environment in which people connect with the outside world as a result of technological growth in contemporary society of the twenty-first century. “Citizen journalism” was created as a result of the ICTS’s expansion of the frontier of new media channels of communication. Among other things, these ICT-driven communication channels include cable television, the internet, and the World Wide Web. The world is now more accessible to communication, and it is happening more quickly thanks to the new media.

Obtaining, compiling, and disseminating news is a crucial aspect of journalism. One social institution that needs freedom to operate well in society is journalism. Journalism is essential to society because it acts as its watchdog and continuously disseminates information, education, and socialization. According to Soeze (2015), the media, which serves as the watchdog of society, is responsible for keeping the general population informed, educated, and socialized. This entails educating the public on the daily dealings and activities of those working in government, whether they are military or civilian. Additionally, the media ensures that the government is aware of the desires and sentiments of those it controls.

Journalism sets the agenda, plans public dialogues and debates, and interprets problems to place them in the correct context and give them significance for the public. Through these functions, journalism serves as the voice and defender of the marginalized and disadvantaged in society by working to not only inform, educate, and socialize but also to elevate and elevate concerns (Sambe, 2018).

It has not always been simple for journalists to gather and distribute news, in large part because of the limited independence caused by the government’s tight control over the media. The relationship between the government and the media has thus been described by Uche (2009) as “a cat and mouse affair” in Nigeria. This suggests that there has been interference with the free flow of information.

But citizen journalism is simply the process through which members of the public take on the duty of gathering, sharing, and analyzing information or news, particularly over the internet. Public reporting has becoming more popular. The adage “Everyone and anybody can be or, better yet, is a journalist” is true. However, citizen journalism unquestionably also contributed to keeping our leaders alert and allowing us to have “eyes everywhere.” The top-down, near-unilateral communication structure of the mainstream media is inverted by citizen journalism, which is a straightjacket. According to Bowman and Willis (2013), “Participatory journalism is a bottom-up, emergent phenomena in which there is little or no formal journalistic process dictating the actions of a staff.”

They note that “this approach’s flexibility places greater emphasis on information publishing than filtering. Public conversations take place in the neighborhood. Traditional news outlets, on the other hand, are organized to screen information before publishing it. In its purest form, citizen journalism disallows gatekeeping. In this type of journalism, information reaches the public directly involved in content creation in its raw, “naked,” and unadulterated form.

In terms of establishing free and democratic societies, citizen journalism is quickly developing into a powerful force to be reckoned with. In the modern day, the development of new media technology and its application to politics are producing some positive results. According to Educause Learning Initiative (2007), the definition of “citizen journalism” is always changing.

According to Banda (2010), citizen journalism is a fast developing branch of journalism in which regular people take the initiative to report news or voice opinions on events in their society. He continues by pointing out that it is news created by, for, and for the people. Therefore, citizen journalism is a form of journalism that is oriented on the interests of regular people.

The idea of the public taking an active part in the process of gathering, reporting, evaluating, and disseminating news and information is known as citizen journalism. It is sometimes referred to as “public,” “participatory,” “democratic,” “guerilla,” or “street journalism” (Glaser, 2007, cited in Nelson, Tunji and Sulemen, 2012). Citing Salawu (2007), they added that the development of citizen journalism was a result of the democratization of multi-media technologies by and for the people.

The increasing dominance of social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, and Instagram has allowed for the widespread dissemination of world news, which is no longer limited to traditional newspapers or news outlets. Fake news has become a serious problem in our day and age since these platforms have neglected to verify the information or news that is published on them, which has led to a sharp rise in the spread of false information through this medium of communication and engagement. Simply put, fake news is material that has been purposefully misrepresented or completely fabricated before being distributed to the general public. Social media has become a major source of fake news at epidemic levels. The study examined how citizen journalism has affected the field of journalism in this century.

1.2       Statement of Problem

The study examined the impact of citizen journalism on the practice of journalism in the state of Osun. It is important to note that the majority of private individuals who work as citizen journalists did not complete the fundamental requirements for earning a degree in journalism, i.e., the core journalistic skills of researching, investigating, interviewing, reporting, and writing that a professional journalism should go through.

Fake news has become more prevalent in the dissemination of information through social media platforms as a result of the lack of professionalism that most citizen journalists display. They also fail to take into account the ethics of the profession of journalism, their sense of social responsibility, and their professional standards, which are traits that trained journalists typically possess. Consequently, some citizen journalist lack fundamental journalism training. It is against this backdrop that the study investigates the influence of citizen journalism on the practice of journalism in Osun state.

1.3      Objective of the study

The primary objective of this study is to:

  1. To examine the extent at which citizen journalism influenced the practice of journalism in Osun state.
  2. To determine how citizen journalism influence the practice of journalism in Osun state.

1.4       Research questions

  1. To what extent has citizen journalism influence the practice of journalism in Osun state?
  2. How has citizen journalism influence the practice of journalism in Osun state?

1.5       Significance of the Study

The other service industries in Nigeria as a whole would benefit from and be interested in this study as well as Nigerian journalists specifically. Researchers, journalists, and the entire nation of Nigeria will greatly profit from the study’s adoption of the law, which will promote journalism’s professionalism and ethnic diversity.

The findings of this study will notify the government, civil society organizations (CSOs), and all other pro-democratic groups of the necessity to implement strategies and mechanisms for countering false news in order to guarantee quality journalism and a responsible expression by everyone. Thus, this study will contribute to knowledge advancement in academia. In order to carry out related investigations, the academic community will use this work as a model. once more, reporters.

Because the media are crucial to the success of every democracy, the study’s findings will also give media professionals a framework for acting ethically while sharing information. They’ll gain understanding of how fake news affects the nation’s democracy as a result of it as well. The study’s findings will also provide policymakers with ready-to-use information for limiting misinformation in the traditional media as well as in new media, allowing citizens to voice their thoughts responsibly for the benefit of democracy. This research considerably adds to the body of theoretical and empirical literature in this field of study by doing this.

1.6       Scope of the study

The study which investigates the influence of citizen journalism on the practice of journalism shall be narrowed in scope to journalists in Osun state. Therefore, the geographical scope of this study shall be within Osun state.

The Nigeria Union of Journalists centre beside Technical College will be selected because of its proximity to the researcher as it will be difficult if not impossible to study all journalists in Nigeria. Other important factor to select NUJ Press Centre beside Technical College, Osogbo is to be able to see as many journalists as possible because the centre is home to many.

1.7     Operational Definition of Terms

Citizen journalism is simply the process by which the public takes the responsibility of collecting, disseminating and analysing information or news especially via the internet.

Journalism: this study sees journalism as the work of collecting and writing news stories for newspapers, magazine, radio, television and the internet.

Fake news is untrue information presented as news. It often has the aim of damaging the reputation of a person or entity, or making money through advertising revenue.

Practice of Journalism for purposes of this research the practice of journalism will refer to the legal and ethical means that guide the operation of journalists and media houses.

Profession of Journalism the researcher will look at the ideological and professional profiles of journalists in the media, professional orientation of traditional media practitioners.

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