Hacker journalists. Really?

Can Computer Nerds Save Journalism? asks Time magazine in an article published on its website. It struck me as a rather technocratic approach, assuming that programming knowledge leads to innovation strengthening professional journalism. I’m not entirely clear how being taught XML, HTML and other coding languages commonly used on websites today makes for better journalists.

A more sober reflection from Dan Gillmor, looking at hacker journalists and a number of other ideas infused with technology can be read here. As Dan notes,

This is why I’ve grown more and more certain that we will not lack for a supply of quality news and information. This comes with two caveats. First, we need a solid supply of people who are willing to take some responsibility for getting quality news and information. Second, we can’t let government and/or big media take away the freedoms we now have to experiment.

This is precisely what I hope to do via new media and citizen journalism to capture post-war Sri Lanka’s rich potential for new structures of governance, following from existing work and experience through Groundviews, Vikalpa and Vikalpa Video.

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