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posted by Dopefish on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:30PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the freedom-is-not-free dept.

combatserver writes:

"While The Guardian and The New York Times reported on the NSA targeting of data leaked by popular mobile apps, independent sources produced highly-detailed articles--accompanied by source material--that paint a much broader picture of NSA capabilities and intent. Recent restrictions imposed on journalists--a result of corporate influence, editorial decisions, and threats against journalists--combined with the ease of establishing a website, might be driving a new era in journalism.

The Intercept recently announced a shift towards independent reporting with the creation of their own news outlet, free of the constraints imposed on journalists by 'Big Media' and governments. Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras and Jeremy Scahill have joined forces to provide the world with an alternative, perhaps blazing a path towards a fundamental change in how news is reported and distributed. SoylentNews can play a significant role in this shift towards journalistic freedom--we share many common core-ideals, and can give voice to independent news sources.

The Big Question: How will 'Big Media' and governments react to this shift in journalism?"

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Geezer on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:35PM

    by Geezer (511) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:35PM (#1558)

    The Big Answer to the Big Question is simple: suppression and oppression.

    Governments and businesses will act in their own self-interest as they always have.

    The interesting question is what form will said oppression and supression take.

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by mtrycz on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:56PM

      by mtrycz (60) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:56PM (#1567)

      I beg to disagree with the spirit of your post, sir.

      While it's true that the governments and the established media will try to counter that (thank you, Cptn. Obvious), you conclusion seems to be that no action is worth doing. Am I gettin you right?

      Well inaction exactly what keeps them in place. Let me give you an example: If it wasn't for an initiative from a handfull of geeks, you would have been stuck with Beta. Yet, here we are.
      Don't let them bring you down, ever.

      --
      In capitalist America, ads view YOU!
      • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:15PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:15PM (#1575)

        I didn't get the sense he/she was implying no action is worth doing. The post is pessimistic (accurate?), but hell most people here are probably pessimists but that doesn't make them apathetic. If we were we probably wouldn't bother posting in the first place. Shit the sun's luminosity will be too great for earth in a billion years anyway!

      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Geezer on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:03PM

        by Geezer (511) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:03PM (#1605)

        "Am I gettin you right?"

        Um, no. What I mean is, it will be highly interesting to pop some corn and watch the gradual application of various coercive tactics against indie journalists who appear on the oligarchs' radar.

        As for doing nothing, I'm far from it. Not only do I actively support independent journalism through the EFF and ACLU, I'm also active in the Occupy movement.

        • (Score: 2, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:11PM

          by The Mighty Buzzard (18) Subscriber Badge <themightybuzzard@soylentnews.org> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:11PM (#1810) Homepage Journal

          I support the EFF but the ACLU lost any claim to being a staunch defender of rights when they decided they were going to fight for even the most extreme interpretations of every law and Amendment except the 2nd.

          You're either for our liberties or against them; you don't get to cherry pick and retain any credibility.

          --
          My rights don't end where your fear begins.
          • (Score: 1) by c0lo on Wednesday February 19 2014, @02:25AM

            by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 19 2014, @02:25AM (#2097) Journal

            I support the EFF but the ACLU lost any claim to being a staunch defender of rights when they decided they were going to fight for even the most extreme interpretations of every law and Amendment except the 2nd.

            In brief: citation needed.
            In details: no, seriously, I'm not trolling. I'm acutely missing a reference to what exactly ACLU has done.

            --
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19 2014, @08:02AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19 2014, @08:02AM (#2223)

            It's about not duplicating the efforts of the NRA. Or is the NRA doing a poor job? If you want the ACLU to cover 2nd Amendment issues, join the ACLU and agitate for more 2nd Amendment work. The ACLU asks its members what issues to focus on. The real problem is that too many 2nd Amendment supporters won't join the ACLU because they think the ACLU is "bleeding-heart liberals", so they go and join the NRA, and with the sheer size of the NRA, the ACLU feels that the 2nd Amendment is already pretty well covered. They have not rejected you, you have rejected them.

            • (Score: 1) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:16AM

              by The Mighty Buzzard (18) Subscriber Badge <themightybuzzard@soylentnews.org> on Thursday February 20 2014, @05:16AM (#3195) Homepage Journal
              Sorry, not buying it. They're happy to duplicate efforts with the EFF but not the NRA? No, they've made quite clear where they stand by the cases they assist on. Judging them by their actions gives nothing but an accurate picture of their beliefs.
              --
              My rights don't end where your fear begins.
    • (Score: 1) by spiritfiend on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:25PM

      by spiritfiend (964) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:25PM (#1681)

      The Big Answer to the Big Question is simple: suppression and oppression.

      Governments and businesses will act in their own self-interest as they always have.

      The interesting question is what form will said oppression and supression [sic] take.

      The reality is more nuanced than this. Consolidation of power has protected the ruling elite from the negative consequences of their actions. Businesses certainly appear to act in their own self-interest, but this doesn't protect them from getting run into the group by officers pursuing their own private agendas.

      As far as governments are concerned, I recall the US Government being shut down by a minority party in recent memory.

  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by crutchy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:35PM

    by crutchy (179) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:35PM (#1559) Homepage Journal

    they won't bother to pay journalists to research stories when consumers who pay to read news stories can also post them too

  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by BradTheGeek on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:45PM

    by BradTheGeek (450) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:45PM (#1562)

    Independent journalism has a place, and I applaud its growth and freedom. However, to do truly in depth reporting, especially in certain arenas takes money. Where does it come from?

    In an era where we increasingly want free or cheap media? How do we fund such efforts with minimal bias?

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Sir Garlon on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:39PM

      by Sir Garlon (1264) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:39PM (#1590)

      Public broadcasting has had a crowdfunding model for what, 50 years or so? (They also eagerly accept money from corporations and governments, and many believe they are highly biased.)

      I would not mind if all for-profit media died today and a handful of PBS-style news sources took their place.

      --
      [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
      • (Score: 4, Interesting) by hemocyanin on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:23PM

        by hemocyanin (186) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:23PM (#1680) Journal
        Except PBS is beholden to large contributors and it turns out, money ends up driving its stories AND its viewpoint. Example: http://pando.com/2014/02/12/the-wolf-of-sesame-str eet-revealing-the-secret-corruption-inside-pbss-ne ws-division/ [pando.com] -- Pension Peril is a two year series on public employee pensions financed by a billionaire who is actively lobbying for the end of such pensions. PBS essentially buried the funding source information and violated its own policies in order to hide the contribution.

        Despite Arnold's pension-slashing activism and his foundation's ties to partisan politics, Leila Walsh, a spokesperson for the Laura and John Arnold Foundation (LJAF), told Pando that PBS officials were not hesitant to work with them, even though PBS's own very clear rules prohibit such blatant conflicts. (note: the term "PBS officials" refers interchangeably to both PBS officials and officials from PBS flagship affiliate WNET who were acting on behalf of the entire PBS system).

        To the contrary, the Arnold Foundation spokesperson tells Pando that it was PBS officials who first initiated contact with Arnold in the Spring of 2013. She says those officials actively solicited Arnold to finance the broadcaster's proposal for a new pension-focused series. According to the spokesperson, they solicited Arnold's support based specifically on their knowledge of his push to slash pension benefits for public employees.

        ...

        With PBS's "Pension Peril" series echoing many of the same pension-cutting themes that the Arnold Foundation is promoting in the legislative arena, and with the series not explicitly disclosing the Arnold financing to PBS viewers, the foundation's spokesperson says her organization is happy with the segments airing on stations throughout the country. However, she says the foundation reserves "the ability to stop funding" the series at any time "in the event of extraordinary circumstances."

        And there is this: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/05/27/1305 27fa_fact_mayer?printable=true&currentPage=all [newyorker.com] which outlines the way in which PBS stations have dropped shows that might be controversial for major donors. PBS is basically becoming owned, sort of like an artsy Fox or NBC.

        As for First Look Media, I'm sure that for a time it will actually act independently and be a good source of news. I'm also fairly pessimistic that it will remain so for all time -- like anything, it will grow, flourish, age, wither, die, and rot. Public broadcasting happens to be in withering stage.

        PS: PBS has backed out of the deal with Arnold ( http://pando.com/2014/02/14/nyt-pbs-to-return-john -arnolds-3-5-million-following-pando-expose/ [pando.com] ) -- but that is certainly only because it got caught.

      • (Score: 2, Informative) by The Mighty Buzzard on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:30PM

        by The Mighty Buzzard (18) Subscriber Badge <themightybuzzard@soylentnews.org> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @07:30PM (#1825) Homepage Journal

        PBS has never been unbiased, at least within my lifetime. About the best you can say for them is they're less blatantly adversarial in their approach than most news corps.

        Unfortunately, most journalists come out of school ready to crusade against evil corporations (read: all of them), anyone who isn't a Democrat, and anyone who doesn't agree with this approach to journalism. The rub is that there's nothing that can be done about this while still maintaining any semblance of a free press.

        Hopefully, having non-journalism-degree-having people reporting the news on sites like this will at least give the unserved majority of us a bit better access to what's actually happening in the world.

        --
        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
  • (Score: 2, Informative) by FatPhil on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:45PM

    by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:45PM (#1563) Homepage

    As uncontrolled misinformation runs riot.

    (reddit boston bomber hunt...)

    --
    I know I'm God, because every time I pray to him, I find I'm talking to myself.
    • (Score: 1) by mj on Wednesday February 19 2014, @11:20AM

      by mj (399) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @11:20AM (#2332)

      24-hour news wishes it could be that intense

      --
      The nihilists have such good imaginations.
  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:47PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:47PM (#1564)

    While I'm thrilled these independent sources exist, and I support them 100% (even if I often disagree with them), I'm not convinced they're any more independent than any other source. As soon as they become a threat they'll be closed down: the banks will refuse to allow people to pay them, sources will refuse to talk with them, etc. "The Intercept" is great, but I don't see any reason to believe they'll be able to report more openly than any one else. Are they a corp based in Iceland? No. What definitive steps have they taken to back up their claim? Granted their staff are so far composed of fearless folks like Poitras and Greenwald, and backed by lots of money, but that's rarely enough. Good luck to them all regardless, and I sure hope I'm wrong!

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19 2014, @07:04AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 19 2014, @07:04AM (#2196)

      Banks will stop people from paying them? There's this new thing called Bitcoin you may have heard about...

      That's of course not to say they're impossible to shut up. But with cryptocurrency, it becomes that much harder to shut someone up with a Wikileaks-style donation blockade (which eventually failed anyway). Going after DNS? Just the thing Namecoin needs for more adoption. National firewalls? Tor, including obfuscated bridges. NSA on your ass? Well, that does complicate things, but they're hardly unbeatable when gone up against within a certain scope (not all crypto is weakened, after all...distribute the content first, under their noses, and drop a key to decrypt it after the fact before they know what hit 'em).

      Whack-a-mole is an interesting game...

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by martyb on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:55PM

    by martyb (76) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:55PM (#1566) Journal

    From TFS:

    The Big Question: How will 'Big Media' and governments react to this shift in journalism?"

    The obvious answer is: poorly.

    They may attempt to impose restrictions. They may attempt to harass whatever parties they can identify. There are many things they can attempt. But I suspect that all of such attempts will be somewhat ham-fisted and poorly implemented.

    In essence, they'd be trying to play whack-a-mole with various uncomfortable (to them) news sources. There is some value in that for them; the sooner the "opposition" can be "quieted", the smaller the audience available to the soapbox. OTOH, with the proliferation of twitter, facebook, instagram, etc., there is a real possibility that such sources could regain their audience quickly in the event of an attempt at quieting them.

    Case in point, see what happened when an old-time nerd news site tried to quiet a boycott; people found another way to communicate.

    OT: It has been a real joy for me to see the discussions here blossom into the wonderfulness that I remember way back when. I lurked on /. from the time before they even had UIDs, there. We're part of history folks. Hats off to all who made SN possible! Ditto to all who contribute their insightful and humorous commentary to these stories.

    --
    Wit is intellect, dancing.
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by FatPhil on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:27PM

      by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:27PM (#1583) Homepage

      OT: but beware newlywed syndrome. We don't want everyone going "wow, I'm so happy!" for 2 weeks, posting way more than ever, and then getting bored and tired after the honeymoon period. We need staying power.

      --
      I know I'm God, because every time I pray to him, I find I'm talking to myself.
      • (Score: 1) by martyb on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:39PM

        by martyb (76) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:39PM (#1591) Journal

        OT: but beware newlywed syndrome. We don't want everyone going "wow, I'm so happy!" for 2 weeks, posting way more than ever, and then getting bored and tired after the honeymoon period. We need staying power.

        Excellent observation; point well taken. Thanks for the feedback!

        --
        Wit is intellect, dancing.
      • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Thexalon on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:48PM

        by Thexalon (636) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:48PM (#1661)

        I'm not too concerned about that: As long as everyone's having fun commenting, that creates site content, which creates more users, which creates the momentum to have staying power. Plus I've always wanted a 3-digit UID.

        Some of the milestones that might be worth watching include:
        - Stories per day
        - Comment count of stories on front page

        If we get to the point where either or both of these numbers exceed that Other News for Nerds, I'll consider our revolt at least viable.

        --
        Alcohol makes the world go round ... and round and round.
        • (Score: 1) by hemocyanin on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:26PM

          by hemocyanin (186) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:26PM (#1682) Journal

          Me too, but it will take a decade before it is ubercool.

      • (Score: 1) by gottabeme on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:46PM

        by gottabeme (1531) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:46PM (#1896)

        I agree. I think perhaps the most important thing we can do is to find good stories and submit them with good summaries.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by dilbert on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:56PM

      by dilbert (444) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:56PM (#1603)
      I agree with your assertion the government will react poorly, but I think an equally important question is "How will people ordinary people react?". Since 'The Intercept' will initially be focusing their reporting on the Snowden files, I'll focus my comments here on the same story. I'm deeply concerned about the egregious privacy violations the NSA and for-profit corporations have been pursuing. I've been following the story since it broke last June. I've changed many of my computing behaviors and advocated for my friends and family to do the same, but nobody seems to care. For example, I wanted to start encrypting all my emails, but my family would never be able to use encryption. To counter this, since the majority of my family emails only other family members, I rolled my own mailserver knowing that since most emails wouldn't leave the box (and using SSL between the browser and webmail client), the emails wouldn't be unencrypted on the wire to be sniffed, or ready to be subpoena or data-mined from/by the corporations. People in my family tried it out for a few days, but none of them are currently using the server (some haven't even logged in more than once). They're content to use gmail/outlook/yahoo. The 'cost' of updating their contacts with a new email address is too great! Besides, they have nothing to hide, right? So it's great that Greenwald/Poitras/Scahill are doing this type of reporting, but so what? Normal people don't care about things they perceive are too abstract/scary/whatever. Is this type of journalism going to be read by the vast majority of people? If they do stumble across it will they care? It makes me sad, but I doubt it.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:34PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @06:34PM (#1786)

        I feel your pain. Maybe buy them all personal emails at neomailbox.ch (or whatever), then set their current email addresses to forward everything to neomailbox, and reply only via neomailbox; over time, stop using their current emails? Good luck.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by girlwhowaspluggedout on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:59PM

    by girlwhowaspluggedout (1223) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @12:59PM (#1568)

    IMO, the problem isn't the platform but the paycheck. Thanks to the intarwebs, most people can publish whatever their heart desires and reach, at least potentially, a global audience. But the crucial difference between this publishing platform and the platform that "Big Media" provides is the fact that the latter pays its writers and editors to produce content.

    Unless you are payed for your publication, or have a trust fund or enjoy some such lucky-bastard type felicitous circumstances, you cannot make a living from it. If you wish to be truly free from the influence of business or government, then government subsidies and donations from the support-my-cause-in-exchange-for-my-money rich are out of the question.

    Professional as you may be, this type of publication will necessarily be nothing more than a hobby or a part time gig for you, since most of the time you have to work on securing a paycheck. The only option you have is, what, advertising? I don't see ads on the Intercept's website. Perhaps that will change later on. I'd like to see someone who isn't already gainfully employed as a journalist succeed in such an endeavor.

    --
    Soylent is the best disinfectant.
    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Sir Garlon on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:21PM

      by Sir Garlon (1264) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:21PM (#1576)

      Also, there's less accountability when journalists are just setting up their own shop because no one is going to tell Famous, Independent Journalist "your methods have slipped and you can't print this story till you check your facts." The next thing you know, they'll be pandering to an audience and accepting kickbacks from their corporate sponsors just like Big Media do now. Just because because Big Media is untrustworthy, it does not follow that "independent" media are trustworthy.

      --
      [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
      • (Score: 1) by HiThere on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:40PM

        by HiThere (866) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:40PM (#1890) Journal

        If both of two sources are untrustworthy, then go with the one that gives a wider spread of opinion. And don't trust *it*, either. Just because I think vitamins are over-hyped, that doesn't mean I think they're useless.

        --
        Javascript is what you use to allow unknown third parties to run software you have no idea about on your computer.
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by RobotMonster on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:21PM

      by RobotMonster (130) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:21PM (#1577) Journal

      In Australia "big media" has been in a steep decline; the traditional print empires are losing money hand-over-fist, despite their attempts to move online. Their traditional advertising revenue has been gutted, and their internet advertising is pale in comparison. One of the large media empires (I forget which), suffered a $100 million reduction in print advertising revenue last year, while only making around $5 million via online advertising.

      This has resulted in mass staff reductions at all the traditional serious newspapers where paid journalism used to happen; now many of their "journalists" are essentially working-from-home for peanuts, just grabbing stuff off the internet; a bunch of this is even being done from New Zealand, where they can get away with paying people even less...

      The business model that used to pay for quality journalism is failing badly, at least in Australia.

      • (Score: 1) by monster on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:47PM

        by monster (1260) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @04:47PM (#1696) Journal

        It doesn't have to be that way. Many times, the "big media" execs are just funneling the cash reserves of the company to other ventures, so when they take a hit in viewership or income, they are too depleted to survive and laments of "Internet is killing journalism!" follow, but are not deserved. Any healthy company can be brought to the ground by bad management, even without market forces against it.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:18PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @03:18PM (#1645)

      The Intercept looks like a single focus news site, like Groklaw. I suspect the people doing this aren't getting paid, as you mention, but someone is probably picking up the tab for web site hosting and other expenses. They might be around for a few years and stir up trouble like Groklaw did.

    • (Score: 1) by dmc on Wednesday February 19 2014, @06:33AM

      by dmc (188) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @06:33AM (#2188)

      "
      IMO, the problem isn't the platform but the paycheck. Thanks to the intarwebs, most people can publish whatever their heart desires and reach, at least potentially, a global audience. But the crucial difference between this publishing platform and the platform that "Big Media" provides is the fact that the latter pays its writers and editors to produce content.
      "

      My theory is this isn't actually so much of a problem. Perhaps post-intrawebs, we simply don't benefit from keeping the journalism industry as it was. Perhaps 90% of the historical journalism industry can be more than adequately replaced by individual unpaid 'hobbyist' journalists. How many news sites like this one and slashdot that accept user submissions and have 10,000+ users exist? If even 1% of those spend just 1 hour a week doing hobbyist level journalism, that might be most of what a large percentage of society need. Sure, it's good to have some well-funded next-gen Woodward-and-Bernsteins that can afford to do real time and resource consuming primary research. But I'm not even sure much of that is really necessary in a world where you have an occasional Deep Throat or Edward Snowden spill dirty secrets to a global audience of hobbyist journalists. And for the mainstream stuff, it makes perfect sense to have things like weather reports and daily crime reports simply available online where hobbyists can digest the raw data into replacements for their traditional newspaper counterparts.

      But that said, we do need to spend more time focusing on how people can make a living in the radically new and still changing information age. Myself, I'd like to see a future world where technological advance allows the majority of traditional jobs to become obsolete, and the resulting minority of jobs split amongst more workers that work for their paycheck fewer hours a week. I think historically before technological advance, the idea of working 60 hours a week to obtain a fairly meager existence was normal. At some point we decided that 40 hours/week was more reasonable. I think it would be awesome (and actually likely possible) if someday in the not so distant future most of society could 'make a living' only working 20 hours a week at a grocery store or fast food restaurant or as an entertainer, and then spend another 20 unpaid hours a week on hobbies such as journalism or non-saleable artistry etc. That's my positive vision for the future. I may not live to see it, but I do believe if we grow up as a human race it is entirely possible.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by linsane on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:00PM

    by linsane (633) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:00PM (#1570)

    Not just here, but BBC, Daily mail etc are all now more worth reading for the armchair journalists and blog relateded commenters. Particularly interesting is when those writing the articles participating there too.

    On an unrelated note, 2 days in and it is about time for a bitcoin article here please :-)

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by RobotMonster on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:12PM

      by RobotMonster (130) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:12PM (#1572) Journal

      2 days in and it is about time for a bitcoin article here please :-)

      There was one yesterday; admittedly it didn't have the b-word in the subject line, so you may have missed it ;-)

      MIT Students Subpoenaed Over Tidbit [soylentnews.org]

      • (Score: 1) by linsane on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:30PM

        by linsane (633) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:30PM (#1585)

        Thanks for the pointer - can get my fix now.

        I'm so used to seeing an article like that have the comment count shoot through the roof which is my trigger for jumping in to have a look-see. Editors at The Other Place are evidently a lot less subtle about click bait generation or whatever the term is

        • (Score: 1) by RobotMonster on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:52PM

          by RobotMonster (130) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:52PM (#1601) Journal

          Yeah, the Other Place loves the click-bait. I'm hoping soylent manages to have headlines and summaries that don't misrepresent TFA in the interests of sensationalism...(Apologies for the double-negative).

          With regards to bitcoin stories -- it's now fairly regular for me to see bitcoin stories on the mainstream television news! (in Australia) They don't have any clue what they're talking about, but that's normal for anything involving computers on the TV...

    • (Score: 1) by Zwerg_Sense on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:06PM

      by Zwerg_Sense (927) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @10:06PM (#1967)

      Have not seen any critical thinking on the BBC News site wrt GCHQ / Snowden. No article to add insightful comments to.

      • (Score: 1) by linsane on Wednesday February 19 2014, @12:42AM

        by linsane (633) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @12:42AM (#2049)

        OK, so I admit, I'm addicted to the comments on Robert Peston's blog and have been since 2007
        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/correspondents/robertpes ton/ [bbc.co.uk]

        Its where I get my fill of econopolitics at any rate and at least one step up from the Zerohedge madness. The centre left / establishment leanings of the BBC are not going to get what you are after, I would recommend the Guardian.

        • (Score: 1) by Zwerg_Sense on Wednesday February 19 2014, @08:40PM

          by Zwerg_Sense (927) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @08:40PM (#2830)

          Wow, tremendous amount of comments, thanks for the link!

    • (Score: 1) by Dopefish on Wednesday February 19 2014, @07:19AM

      by Dopefish (12) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @07:19AM (#2199)

      Why do you think we decided to launch SoylentNews? We wanted to capture the community aspect of another site we all know about, including the awesome commenting, but with a quality selection of stories and a vastly improved editorial policy.

      Welcome aboard, linsane! Enjoy your stay.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:07PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:07PM (#1571)

    "How will 'Big Media' and governments react to this shift in journalism?"

    Large media corporations will ignore the shift, and most folks will be none the wiser. The banks, Visa, Mastercard, AMEX, etc., will refuse to allow payments to these journalists, the journalists will have their reputations dragged through the mud and largely discredited in the eyes of the public, the journalists will be harassed by the governments upon every entry/exit to countries and illegally detained under terrorism laws, and their passports will be confiscated. These things are already happening, one reason why Guardian UK moved their Snowden operations to the US, why Assange is holed-up in a building for ages, why Snowden fled and is stuck in Russia, why Wikileaks is on life support (although "Freedom of the Press Foundation" still takes donations on behalf of Wikileaks: https://pressfreedomfoundation.org/ [pressfreed...dation.org]).

  • (Score: 2, Informative) by Pav on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:13PM

    by Pav (114) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:13PM (#1573)

    I can certainly vouch for Scahill. For those that haven't, do yourself a favour and watch some of his stuff [youtube.com]... VERY refreshing. Is real journalism happening in Big Media? Perhaps wading through the dross to get to the good stuff just keeps me from discovering it. Pretty much the only mainstream media I can stand is the BBC, and my own local ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation), although the ABC is currently being attacked by the current Prime Minister [smh.com.au] for being "biased".

  • (Score: 1) by MrGuy on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:15PM

    by MrGuy (1007) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:15PM (#1574)

    Would be to discredit them, not shut them down.

    The problem many independent news outlets have is that they lack name recognition and reputation. So if you want to discredit them, create a bunch of pseduo news outlets, make some shocking claims that you know to be untrue, and then discredit those claims. Hey, presto - independent news outlets are as reliable as tabloid sites and conspiracy theories.

    • (Score: 1) by Sir Garlon on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:11PM

      by Sir Garlon (1264) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:11PM (#1607)

      So if you want to discredit them, create a bunch of pseduo news outlets, make some shocking claims that you know to be untrue

      You mean like Slashdot? ;-)

      --
      [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
    • (Score: 1) by HiThere on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:46PM

      by HiThere (866) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:46PM (#1897) Journal

      No. The clever thing is to promote SOME of them. The ones most untrustworthy. You don't need to invent discreditable reporting, there's plenty out there. You just need to get people to distrust all except official sources. So promote sites that feature DiHydorgen Monoxide fears, Alien Abductions, etc. Drown out the sensible sites.

      Actually, that may not even require any government intervention.

      --
      Javascript is what you use to allow unknown third parties to run software you have no idea about on your computer.
  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:26PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:26PM (#1581)

    You know how there's a huge fight somewhere that is a huge deal to those involved but nobody else ever heard of it? Like the China-Vietnam war of 1979? Tens of thousands died, and yet it made no waves. The whole journalists vs. bloggers thing is like that. Journalists *freaking hate* bloggers. It's a huge deal in their world, and they are forever attempting to discredit the implacable foe. Whenever a blogger scores a major win like Matt Drudge (Lewinski) or Charles Johnson (Rathergate), journalists blow their tops because it should rightfully be them who get the adulation and praise.

    Moreover, being shown up as negligent in their roles of watchdog and exposer of corruption burns burns burns, like a burning ring of fire. Naturally, instead of resolving to do better in the future, they attack the messenger in hopes of scoring a final victory that will forever discredit bloggers in the public eye.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:48PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:48PM (#1598)

      I am not sure that is always true. A lot of original material comes from Bloggers. A great number of bloggers focus intently on specific issues. Take copyright litigation, for example. At any point in time, there are a TON of patent and copyright trolling cases being litigated. A main-stream journalist cannot afford the time to watch all of them for a major outcome. A blogger will dig up important details, and blog about them. A journalist who frequents Twitter may notice a buzz of activity about a specific issue on a blog, and write about it. I see journalist and bloggers as having more of a mutually-beneficial relationship, with things percolate up from the ether, and become mainstream news because of bloggers.

    • (Score: 0, Offtopic) by Pav on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:50PM

      by Pav (114) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @01:50PM (#1600)

      Completely OT but... your post was #1581 (for people who know what that number means).

  • (Score: 1) by CoolHand on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:22PM

    by CoolHand (438) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:22PM (#1610) Journal

    ..that is all

    --
    Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job-Douglas Adams
  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Maddog on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:23PM

    by Maddog (690) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:23PM (#1611)
    Even with the internet, I believe there is still a need for an 'outlet' for the independent journalist in order to reach mass audiences. Current methods rely on significant word-of-mouth to spread which forces the journalist to not only spend time creating content but also 'selling' to get more readers. The guy standing on the street corner pushing his "extra, extra, read all about it!" can only get so far...

    I look forward to more Independent online aggregate news services or sites like this where these journalists can get heard.

    Which takes the question one step further, what is the best approach to reach the masses?

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by elf on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:41PM

    by elf (64) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:41PM (#1617)

    The whole Ed Snowden thing has been quite interesting, it has put in the public eye what everyone has known for a while. But while before everyone just knew it before, it is now in the public eye and up for debate which hasn't been done before.

    I like the idea of this public debate happening but more for the discusion aspect not the fact that it is new news. Since I was a kid I was told all your internet, phone, email etc was monitored but it was never a main stream news item. If real criminals didn't know this was happening then they shouldn't have been criminals :)

    For me this article held interest because of the way the agencies were using their powers to target people they thought were dangerous and difference in opinion with how dangerous the public think they are.

  • (Score: 4, Informative) by nobbis on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:55PM

    by nobbis (62) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @02:55PM (#1625) Homepage Journal
    Can I recommend Flat Earth News [flatearthnews.net] which looks at the effect that the Internet and the move to 24hr news reporting has had on traditional media. The pressure to get stories out quickly, coupled with the reduction in journalist numbers has led to a drop in quality of stories, editorial control and verification of sources, and increasingly PR companies are setting the news agenda.
    Given that power has become concentrated in fewer media companies in the last few decades I would welcome more independent journalism, but I don't see the business model for this, in London free newspapers abound but are dependent on advertising to churn out their pap.
    I would be interested to know if people who have moved from say reading a newspaper to reading blogs, have encountered a wider range of opinions, I suspect not, people tend to read news that agrees with their world view, it is difficult to do otherwise.
    --
    It's easy to look up when your mind's in the gutter
  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by gallondr00nk on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:22PM

    by gallondr00nk (392) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @05:22PM (#1720)

    I would point out there's a distinction between media news and journalism. The latter attempts to expose the truth, however uncomfortable it may be. Media news is essentially a form of entertainment wrapped in a veil of what may be factual information.

    Look at big media, especially on the bilious soapbox end of the scale. The likes of Fox News are essentially mean world syndrome [wikipedia.org] wrapped up for living room consumption.

    This'll sound like a dull truism, but the truth for a lot of big media seems incidental, what actually matters is maintaining network share. In my opinion, Glenn Greenwald's new venture makes little impact on their business model.

  • (Score: 1) by guanxi on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:02PM

    by guanxi (934) on Tuesday February 18 2014, @08:02PM (#1860)

    The Big Question: How will 'Big Media' and governments react to this shift in journalism?

    The bigger question is, why should anyone trust what some 'independent' website reports or says? I think Glenn Greenwald does great work but he also has a cause to advocate. Unless he has an editor (e.g., at The Guardian) he can write whatever he wants. How do I know I'm getting the straight facts from him? How do I know what's true and what's not?