Friday, November 24, 2006

The Best blog in the world and lessons for citizen journalism

The Sunlight Foundation’s group blog won this year’s Best Blog awards at the recently held Best of Blogs (BOBs) awards, in Berlin, Germany.

Amidst the likes of Engadget, Boing Boing, Lifehacker and blog champions, what makes Sunlight Foundation’s group blog stand out? While Engadget and others work like online magazines, Sunlight’s blog works on issues – issues that affect citizens.

The core issues are government transparency and corruption. The group blog involved heavy reader participation its well-known projects – the Punchclock Campaign which gets elected representatives in America to put their schedule online, and Exposing Earmarks, which finds the source of funding for earmarks in bills.

Applying Sunlight's ideas in citizen journalism
What if pioneering citizen journalism initiatives worked on the same principle?

Working on getting more and more reader participation through issues – thus ensuring regular, passionate participation; remember the 1% rule in social media – only 1% contributes, rest only consume.

Related idea: crowdsourcing-based journalism
Jeff Jarvis gives an example of a radio reporter using reader participation to conduct a survey on what programs schools have at the moment.

CitiJ sites must be great at surveys. They must also partner with other media like Radio to spread the effect.


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