Sunday, July 04, 2021

YouTube doesn't want its users to pretend they are really journalists!


fireworks July 4 look like a nebula

Allison Morrow declares in a video title “Journalism and science are incompatible with YouTube.”  This sounds like the old pre-1993 canard “homosexuality is incompatible with military service.”

It’s clear that the big social media companies are put on the spot when non-corporate people (“amateurs” in their parlance) do journalism on the cheap and go against the establishment.  They wanted people to socialize, even create activism, and sell things, but not pretend to be authorities about sensitive things that might affect them.

On the IT blog yesterday, I also linked a similarly spirited video by Karlyn Borysenko, about the need for people to speak out and use their own names.

But there is another side to this.  Yes, some people might lose their jobs, but they may be in positions where they will create disruptions in their workplace, particularly if they have direct reports.  I’ve talked about this before and a related situation led me to take a corporate transfer and relocate in the 1990s. 

There is a side to this that believes it is necessary to act as well as speak.  That means belonging to a group and being in their boat (a kind of “skin in the game”).  It may mean demonstrating.  It may in less frequent cases mean getting arrested or asking for help yourself, and not being above other people’s problems.  It’s related to what I’ve called “the privilege of being listened to” (a very conditional privilege indeed). 

We can ask ourselves, who gets to call themselves a journalist, and who needs to be the street activist, the recruiter, even the social justice huckster.

Journalist Tim Lee (formerly Washington Post, Vox, Ars Technica) writes (in his "rethinking news") that when he worked for the Post he had to cash in all his bitcoin paper wallets if he was going to write about crypto currency.

No comments: