Southside block party shows need for Citizen Journalism in Lansing, MI
July 24, 2007
I could get all sweaty and worked-up about our town's newspaper, the Lansing State Journal. Pure and simple, it's not living up to the historical responsibilities that have been part and parcel of a free press since the founding of our country.
That's a strong statement and it seems harsh and I don't feel good about saying it.
But, I firmly believe that one of the reasons that our part of mid-Michigan is stalled and stuck is because there's a shortage of information about all aspects of activities that affect the quality of life in this area. They are just not covered.
One example: We have a primary election in early August for City Council where I will vote for a council member for our third ward and one who will represent our city at-large.
How do you make an informed decision about who to vote for? Look to the State Journal and you don't even get teased with information. There's an occasional half-reported story, but never enough with which to make a firm decision.
Last weekend, here in the southwest side, there was a block party that got reported in the State Journal today. It a small space, they report that up to 1,000 people gathered. The police closed it down with police dogs and apparent over reaction. I'm sure there's several sides to this story. But, it's barely being reported.
That's why it's time for Citizen Journalism to kick in. Ordinary citizens can become reporters through the use of blogs. It's being done in other parts of the country.
Lansing citizens need other sources of information.
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