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The Media

Rheingold Preaches Mob-Logging 136

Posted by michael
from the hyphenation-intentional dept.
drjparker writes "Howard Rheingold author of Smart Mobs and The Virtual Community among other works has an article in the Online Journalism Review in which he ponders the effects of video over cell phones and adding video to blogs on the future of journalism. The article is titled Moblogs Seen as a Crystal Ball for a New Era in Online Journalism."
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Rheingold Preaches Mob-Logging

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  • Please (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    I read about 3 paragraphs of this story before I felt like puking. Mob-logging? It's sad watching these old, insecure guys like Rheingold (and lately, Tim O'Reilly) try to stay relevant. Pathetic. OK, mod me flamebait, but it's true.
    • Re:Please (Score:2, Insightful)

      by lavaface (685630)
      What? You're right-O'Reilly has no relevance in the technical world. Insecure? Sounds like projection
    • Re:Please (Score:2, Funny)

      by lamp540 (644770)
      I agree. Rheingold is way too old to have anything relevant to say about new technology. He should go play shuffleboard somewhere.
    • "Stay relevant"? Like when "the Well will rule the world"?

      Gimme a break.

      recycling Toffler is still trash.
  • The future is here (Score:2, Insightful)

    by stanmann (602645)
    Slashdot is the future of news. We are doomed to see tubgirl and goatse. Trolls will dominate the newscape. Although the moderators will save us.
  • Moblog?

    Kupost!

    </Final Fantasy dork>

  • by Scalli0n (631648) on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:19AM (#6416036) Homepage
    Somehow I don't see mob-blogging as the 'new media' nor "Putting video cameras and high-speed Net connections in telephones, moves blogging into the streets."

    I think that the media will remain the same, if not more powerful due to the vast quantity of information being provided to people; would you rather siphon through 100 people's random news (crap important to them but not you) vs. getting the quick and dirty (www.cnn.com, news.google.com) ?
    • by bc90021 (43730) * <bc90021 AT bc90021 DOT net> on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:25AM (#6416119) Homepage
      I would think that after a while, there would also be a system that would separate the wheat from the chaff for you, based on a system whose preferences you yourself set. (Kinda like meta-moderations!)

      Many blogging sites already tell you which have been updated recently, but more importantly, which are the most popular. They also will break them down based on content and/or channels. Google just bought blogger.com, and with their ranking system, it will only accelerate the trend.

      Furthermore, there is also word of mouth. When the second Gulf War started, it didn't take long before someone pointed me to The Agnonist [agonist.org], and I got a lot of good news from that site. All without even looking - I merely heard about it.
      • Blogdex [mit.edu] and Daypop [daypop.com] already are close to this, by keeping track of what the current popular links are. Every time a weblog links to something, it's a vote for that URL. That's the closest to democratization of the media if I've seen yet.

        The only thing that needs to happen to match your view is personalization through a web of trust. Perhaps a person's FOAF [rdfweb.org] defines who's opinions they value, and their RSS Aggregregators [mnot.net] will rate stories accordingly. I think NewsMonster [newsmonster.org] is working on something like this,
    • Think about the indexing capablities of Google, which as another poster mentioned, just bought Blogger.com. You could search for exactly what you wanted news on. Now, combine that with a system that stores your personal preferences and/or most common searches, turns it into a portal, and voila! Instant, raw, uncut news from blogs and mob-blogs everwhere!

      OF course, then there wouldn't be some guy in the anchor desk to tell you what to think about the situation, and you'd have to *gasp* think for yourself
    • For science fiction fans, an extreme version of this was predicted in the novel Mother of Storms (John Barnes, 1995, http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/081 2 533453/qid=1057945184/sr=1-3/ref=sr_1_3/103-897443 2-9869404?v=glance&s=books).

      Basic gist: instead of mob bloggers with video cameras and cell phones, imagine thousands of people "broadcasting" the sensory experiences of being in a food riot, etc. in real-time to people around the globe. (also like a real-time version of the wire-trip
  • Moblogs (Score:3, Funny)

    by Surak (18578) * <surak@ m a i l blocks.com> on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:19AM (#6416040) Homepage Journal
    Moblogs: Complete with popups that will make you an offer you CAN'T refuse!

  • Mobile Porn (Score:4, Funny)

    by felonious (636719) on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:21AM (#6416071) Journal
    I'm sorry but all I see is a new era/avenue in the world of porn. Now you can call the 1-800 #'s and view some skank(tm) showing you her goods in public. This could be true voyeurism. You could call a 1-800# and tell the skank(tm) what to do. I would tell the skank(tm) to undress and jump the first homeless guy she sees but make sure to keep the phone on the action.
    1-800-phn-sknk
    I'm sure the live phone cam upskirt cams are coming too. I bet they'll be tied to websites with a meta refresh of 2 seconds or less as an attempt to make it a poor man's video.
    I wonder how advertisers will exploit this?
    • by Otter (3800) on Friday July 11, 2003 @12:17PM (#6416780) Journal
      You know, after a zillion commercials explaining why I need a phone with a a camera (Catherine Zeta-Jones: "What if you suddenly find yourself playing volleyball with bikini models and you call your friends and they don't believe you?") I still couldn't imagine why anyone would want one.

      Until a few days ago when a guy was pointing his phone at the firm, round, barely-miniskirted butt of a Jennifer Lopez clone walking by while yelling, "Ya see that? Ya see that?"

      • Re:Mobile Porn (Score:2, Insightful)

        by dki (597803)
        Yah, men generally find this funny until the camera zooms in on their girlfriend, wife, sister, daughter, or mother. Then they start to understand why stories like this creep us gals out.
        • Oh, I realize that guy was obnoxious and offensive. (Although once a woman's skirt is shorter than her underwear, I start to lose sympathy for her complaints about getting the attention she's screaming for.)

          But after all the nights I've watched those Catherine Zeta-Jones commercials and pestered my wife about why any idiot would want such a thing, it was good for a laugh. And when I told my wife the story, all she said was, "So, are you going to stop cursing out Catherine Zeta-Jones every time she comes on?

  • by creative_name (459764) <pauls AT ou DOT edu> on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:23AM (#6416092)
    Does this mean we'll soon have to watch video clips of the editors posting stories or chrisd pondering the next poll?

    Better still, does this mean that we'll soon be able to immerse ourselves in 24/7, live CowboyNeal?
  • Let's not forget Mr. Rheingold's old classic about the origins of computer technology/culture. [barnesandnoble.com]
  • There are 6 billion people in the world. Let's be generous and say that maybe 1 billion of them even have a computer. Of those 1 billion, maybe 250 million have been on the Internet, ever. Of those 250 million, 200 million have real lives and 25 million are busy on Usenet, looking at porn, trading warez, etc. That leaves maybe 25 million people who might blog. Of those 25 million, 1/10th, or 250 thousand might live in a large metro area where they could participate in a "mob". There are probably 1000
    • "This is so tiny that it's like considering a single butterfly's wings when forecasting the weather. It's negligible."

      Is the weather really better with the Butterfly? [msnbc.com]

      Last time I saw the rainbow-winged dude (on TV, boiling rubber dog bones in the kitchen), he was not so tiny.
    • This is so tiny that it's like considering a single butterfly's wings when forecasting the weather. It's negligible.

      It would appear to be negligible, but really the effects of it are unpredictable given the size of the system and the number of variables.

      The tiniest pebble can start the largest avalanche.
    • I doubt more than 25 million people currently craft the news agenda. In all likelihood, the number of people who control world policies is almost certainly less than 100,000. These are generally the people with gobs of money. How can you trust NBC when it is a subsidiary of GE (weapons, sattelites, power plants). CNN is a unit of AOL. ABC is part of the Disney empire. Granted, these institutions have broken many quality news items but what is left unsaid is truly staggering. They have a vested interest in c
  • So what if tianamen square does happen, won't everyone that owns a phone there get /.'ed?
  • On initial review (Score:4, Informative)

    by Webtommy88 (515386) on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:27AM (#6416146)
    It seems like a good thing without giving too much thought at the moment.

    This is a good thing for places where media censorship occurs regularly. The SARS crisis could not be contained by the Chinese government because of people sending SMS's to others with tales of a disease spreading in certain areas. The news of course didn't cover it, and when China finally acknowledged it, the news down played it. But the SMS's continued, and it gave people a way to do first hand accounts of an event in progress.

    If this can prevent media censorship, I'm all for it.

    But then... who's to say some group won't stage some sort of event in the future and use/force people to blog this to mislead others...
  • wow (Score:1, Interesting)

    by ieatfood (688716)
    Your like a real Mob lackey.
  • Rheingold? (Score:3, Funny)

    by sulli (195030) * on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:29AM (#6416178) Journal
    I for one can't wait for the Götterdammerung that will result from this one.
    • I for one can't wait for the Götterdammerung that will result from this one.

      What the hell does Götterdammerung mean? Speak English, man! If the Romulans, Ferengi and Borg all speak English, is it really too much to ask that you speak it as well? Sheesh...

      GMD

  • While this is a neat little thing, seeing it as the new age of journalism may be a bit much, and a bit dangerous.

    Sure all these people will be bringing different perspectives to what's going on in the world, but along with it they may bring prejudices and narrow viewpoints along with it. These are things we try to avoid in accurate journalism. Not everyone is going to care about bringing every side of the story, they may just show their opinion (bias) in order to persuade others. This is already happening

    • A huge number of journalists are simply PR agents. I've been hoping to see greater depth with the advent of the internet but for the most part, just the same old fluff [ajc.com]. Reporters should link to their sources for stories. Instead of saying "according to a report from xxxxxxx Institution," they should link to it. Provide the entire interview or text of a speech instead of just grabbing a quote (often out of context) Most readers would probably just go with the story, but enterprising or inquisitive minds coul
    • Sure all these people will be bringing different perspectives to what's going on in the world, but along with it they may bring prejudices and narrow viewpoints along with it. These are things we try to avoid in accurate journalism. Not everyone is going to care about bringing every side of the story, they may just show their opinion (bias) in order to persuade others. This is already happening today and encouraging everyone, no matter if they lack experience, objectivity, proper reporting skills, to be a r

  • Not gonna change (Score:2, Interesting)

    by saintjab (668572)
    I don't see this as a big revolution. There are allready millions of people who don't travel anywhere without their camcorder. For the sake of news worthiness video will still have to go through a review process to ensure authenticity, accuracy, whatever. Plus is the quality going to afford the images to be used for news events? Is the clarity and size even available from phones? If anything this will generate a whole boat-load of new short clips for the real-life-video shows that abound. Not that see
  • by Anonymous Coward
    In case you can't be bothered to click the link...

    Moblogs Seen as a Crystal Ball for a New Era in Online Journalism

    But futurist Howard Rheingold says the ultimate democratization of the media will not be about technological advances; rather, it will entail upholding old-fashioned standards to earn viewers' trust.
    Howard Rheingold
    Posted: 2003-07-09

    Editor's Note: On July 5, a few dozen mobile bloggers -- Web publishers who post photos, video and text to the Web from cell phones and other mobile devices -- g
  • problem (Score:3, Insightful)

    by danitor (600348) on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:34AM (#6416233)
    the real problem here is that none of these "mobloggers" is going to have the money to be free to just report news all day. it is the job of "real" reporters to just find news, all day, seven days a week. if you're busy driving to work and earning a buck, you aren't free to only produce news. who has time to check sources/etc.? i'm sure other slashdotters will mention the fact that since there is no real moderation on individual blogs, getting decent news from these sites will also be a time consuming, tedious task. i look forward to seeing solutions to these problems.
    • Re:problem (Score:2, Interesting)

      by jason0000042 (656126)

      Ah, but that's why there are few journalists. You must pay them.

      A single individual (or small group) will not need to do all the reporting. each story can come from anyone who happens to be around when it happens. Aggregators bring reports together from multitudes of varied sources. Reputation systems provide peer review. Someone else mentioned it, it could be OSJ (open source journalism), with the same advantages as OSS.

    • No one's looking to make a living as a cellphone reporter, but what happens when the next Rodney King type situation occurs? Whatever happened to the guy who shot that footage? Does anyone care? He was in the right place at the right time with a bit of consumer-grade technology and he managed to change a city.

      In one sense, he added a new system of checks and balances where none existed before.

      Look for more of that.

      I carry a big camera everywhere and because I do, I get shots that someone with no camera
  • by colmore (56499) on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:35AM (#6416247) Journal
    So Journalism becomes aggregated rumor and mobthought? Thanks but no thanks.

    While there are certainly problems with current Journalism (see New York Times, and the rush for all networks to become like Fox News in the wake of Iraq) I still like knowing where my news comes from and having some entity to hold responsible for the coverage.

    Individual testimonials and stories have their place too, but the people on the street have their own axes to grind as much as the media does and do not as frequently distinguish between fact and rumor. (How many idiots on the internet will scream "Bush is a Coke-Head" or "Clinton had people murdered!" like it's gospel)

    Journalism is in enough trouble with corporate consolidation and deregulation, but this is too much.
    • by aliens (90441) on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:46AM (#6416385) Homepage Journal
      What I want to see is video from the people involved in protests. That's what this is going to be good for. I don't give a crap what the guy holoding the phone/cam thinks, but it will give me a view of an event the mainstream media might have glossed over. Things are so whitewashed it's ridiculous. Try watching the BBC vs any of the US channels. The US won't show anything that might upset us. That's not really telling the truth, it's just partial truths.
      • by Otter (3800)
        Yeah, well don't expect to see anything about protests in Iran (let alone what's happening to the organizers [gooya.com]) on either the BBC or the US media.

        But, since you're presumably talking about a different sort of protests -- I don't get this narcissistic protester mentality. A bunch of people stand around and hold signs. I've done it myself. You do what you can and hope people notice.

        But this business of I'M WALKING ON STILTS AND PUTTING ON A PUPPET SHOW! I MUST BE OBEYED! And if society doesn't reorient itself a

        • I agree, just because you protest doesn't mean society should bend to your will.

          What I want to see is footage of when the media says that the protestors got violent. I've been there when cops start getting way out of hand and the protestors push back. Then on the news it's reported as the protestors being violent and the reason why they were protesting gets lost. The footage shot by the phonecam probably won't change anything but at least I could see it from the street than hear it from the mouth of the m
          • by Otter (3800)
            Well, I doubt if a bit of video from either side settles could settle things one way or the other.

            Two things, though:

            1) I crossed paths with the "anti-globalization" roadshow twice, in Quebec City and Los Angeles. In both cases, it was absolutely crystal clear that the demonstrators came into town spoiling for a fight.

            2) It strikes me as extremely unlikely that in places where large demonstrations have been held for decades without incident -- by minority groups, the Nation of Islam, Maoists, Stalinists,
    • by laetus (45131) on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:49AM (#6416423)

      Jesus, people, get a clue. The whole frickin' article is about the emergent problem of journalistic credibility vs. moblogging.

      Blogs, RSS syndication, RSS aggregators, metablogs and reputation systems like Technorati and NewsMonster now offer a dynamic and rapidly evolving collective editorial filtering system.

      His entire thesis is that the emerging moblogging culture will need to put safeguards into place, like reputation systems. He's not talking about aggregating rumor or mobthought, but the need for mechanisms to sift the wheat from the chaff so that you have rapidly emerging, true information without a paid editorial staff.

      Correct me if I'm wrong, but it sounds alot like Open Source Journalism, collectively written and peer-reviewed.

      • Thanks, Laetus. It's refreshing to see a Slashdot comment from someone who not only read the article but got the point.
      • I read the article, and I don't think that informal aggregates can gain the safeguards of structured systems just by imposing an afterthought of regulation. Slashdot is a good example. It's a fun and interesting alternative source, but if I had to chose between it and the Washington Post as my only source of info (and thank god I don't) I wouldn't keep Slashdot. Peer-reviewal only works when I trust my peers' integrity. On the internet, I really don't.
  • Can't wait to read Goatse's video log. 10 bucks says it will be a real eye-opener.

    Maybe I'll finally get to see what that one girl that keeps sending me five or six emails a day looks like too...I think her name was BritannyXXX--HOT--XXXBritanny or something.

  • Mob-Logging? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by wo1verin3 (473094) on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:41AM (#6416329) Homepage
    >> Rheingold Preaches Mob-Logging

    Is he preacing Mob-Logging?
    Or does he just want Mo-Blogging?
    • That's right. Mob-Logging.

      Everyone's /var/log/syslog and /var/log/messages gets written to every other machine on the 'net.

      Or maybe he wants huge masses of people to gather spontaneously to chop down trees?

  • maybe hes right (Score:4, Informative)

    by Neuronerd (594981) <konrad&koerding,de> on Friday July 11, 2003 @11:42AM (#6416337) Homepage

    Slashdot is a real big success story. The moderation system makes sure I see only at least remotely relevant or funny stuff.

    Now checkout tv.oneworld.net [slashdot.org]

    that already does quite cool stuff with short videos uploaded by virtually anyone.

    If both are combined I could really imagine this to be useful. Imagine something like slashdot where editors select stories. Everybody would then sortof upload their clips that would get moderated. I dont see why this should not be possible.

  • anyone else sees a connection?

    maybe its the future, maybe someone just had a field day at the library..
  • Phreky (Score:2, Funny)

    by jabbadabbadoo (599681)
    I see a new "profession" coming out of this telco/it combo: phreakers doing hacking.

    I propose calling'em "phrakers".

  • It's Mo-blogging (Score:4, Informative)

    by Octagon Most (522688) on Friday July 11, 2003 @12:05PM (#6416589)
    I think the term is moblogging ("moe-blogging") as in mobile weblogging. It's a little confusing in that it talks about mobs of people using mobile devices. You can follow the link [v-2.org] to the origin of the word.
  • Naive (Score:3, Insightful)

    by locarecords.com (601843) <david&locarecords,com> on Friday July 11, 2003 @12:16PM (#6416748) Homepage Journal

    Rheingold gives us more of his simplistic technological determinism and poorly researched and non-empirical ideas.

    So what? A group of people read his work and then actually rush to be the first to wet their pants as he can name them as actually implementing his ideas!?! How lame is that?

    Much more interesting would be a book that actually analysed how the media corporations will use this technology in embedding at a lower level than already shown in the Gulf War. This was perhaps the most potent demonstration of how technology allows us to see everything in real time, but as we are overwhelmed we don't critique, we don't listen and it becomes purely background entertainment.

    For instance in the Gulf War lots was happening in Basra and on the Baghdad Rd, we knew that as there were so many Embeds. BUT what exactly were the US and Brits up to in Western Iraq and Northern Iraq where the Embeds were forbidden (or perhaps persuaded) not to go? We will never know as we were all so sick of footage from the 'media' bit of Iraq that we truly couldn't be bothered to find out...

    That is the power of moblogs... Control through information overload... coming soon...

  • Are blogs just hype? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by BelugaParty (684507) on Friday July 11, 2003 @12:17PM (#6416773)
    Maybe I'm alone, maybe I'm not, but I've never visited a blog on a regular basis, unless the blog is in front of something else that I want, I probably wouldn't ever see one. So, maybe you can help me out? Where do I even begin looking for useful/meaningful blogs?

    To me, I hear all about blogs, but have never ever found an interesting or useful one. Come to think of it, I haven't even seen that many. So maybe there's an index I'm missing? Or maybe I need to get more saavy friends?! whatever.

    It seems like blogs and their importance are all hype.
    • I have no idea what your interests are, but The Progressive Review is a good place to start. Not exactly a blog but lots of depth on the site. Follow some links and you'll find some interesting blogs. Most of them have a set of links to other like-minded bloggers on their sidebars. True, there's a lot of crap but don't quit looking. Googling "blog" and some key words is also a good place to start.
    • I always find it ironic when people post on Slashdot that they never read weblogs. Slashdot is a weblog! Weblogs can be collective [memepool.com], personal and filled with bad poetry [livejournal.com], or just recent news stories [slashdot.org]. They can have original writing [shirky.com] or boobies [fark.com]. Weblogs are lots of things, and Sturgeon's Law [jargon.net] applies.
    • by most definitions

      though you did say "Where do I even begin looking for useful/meaningful blogs?" ;-)

      As far as a blogging index, try technorati, daypop, blogdex or the blogrolls (links to other blogs) from kottke.org rebeccablood.net (or other blogging grandparents) or check out eatonweb.com and the original weblog portal.

      sorry, no time to code links for you....

    • someone has mentioned that slashdot is a blog...most BBs would be considered a blog as well...

      its sorta a new term for an old thing

      as far as personal blogs...I really should start bookmarking sites..I have a problem with that. :( Ive found that following links from Slashdot posters to articles and such that exist in blogs have led me to some decent writers who have something to say.

      on a personal note, my blog is personal. Serves as a public journal for me, and a way for the family to follow what Im doing
  • What in the hell is the point of this article? This guy spouts off about this conference that he didn't even attend. Big fucking deal. I probably know as much about the conference as this guy does. Want to hear what I have to say? No? Oh but this guy is a "futurist". Wow. Now that carries some weight with me. What does this self-proclaimed "futurist" have to say about some conference that he didn't attend? I'm also curious as to what he thought of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. Anyone hav
  • indymedia (Score:5, Informative)

    by akb (39826) on Friday July 11, 2003 @12:23PM (#6416878)
    Indymedia has been doing this kind of stuff for years. Its a network of websites where people upload multimedia news content. It started off as an event based thing around protests (Seattle '99) but has grown into a network of over 100 sites worldwide, that try to provide community news coverage on an ongoing basis.

    For most of the coverage is not done live, ie people take pictures, video, etc and then go back home or to a community media center and then upload it. There have been a wide variety of live wireless strategies used including:

    - internet radio stream with live callins via cellphone (most popular)
    - phone cams
    - sms gateway
    - onsite kiosk provided via 3G phone, for picture upload, live chat
    - live 802.11b video streaming

    Since Seattle '99 thousands of a/v clips, tens of thousands of photos and hundreds of thousands of text articles have been contributed to this collaborative news platform.

    We've done some stuff with syndication of our content but the protocols don't exist yet to fully exchange multimedia content.

    One thing that I think Indymedia has that blog culture doesn't is that its not "just a website". The websites function to allow anyone to participate but that's generally not thought to be sufficient. Each of the 100+ nodes in the network has a group of people that work to cultivate a liberated media space by doing things like provide training on how to do multimedia and reporting, holds film showings, provides technical support, publish newspapers, etc.

    I work with DC Indymedia [indymedia.org].
  • by DeusExLibris (247137) on Friday July 11, 2003 @12:26PM (#6416905)
    As I have stated here before [slashdot.org], to be considered "journalism", trust of the source is a required characteristic. Rheingold himself makes this point:

    "Journalism, if it is to deserve the name, is not about the quality of the camera, but about the journalist's intuition, integrity, courage, inquisitiveness, analytic and expressive capabilities, and above all, the trust the journalist has earned among readers."

    Whether we call it journalism or not, we all participate in communities of trusted information. We talk with our friends and family about politics, co-workers about innovations in technology, etc. Who we choose to believe or listen to within these groups is based upon how much we trust the other party. The so-called democratization of journalism is nothing more than the globalization of the chat around the water-cooler.

    Improvements in technology will not improve the quality of the content (in fact, it will probably bias it towards the prurient and salacious), but it does increase the pool of potential reporters. While we will undoubtedly see the rise of individuals that draw a devoted gathering (ala Matt Drudge), the "traditional" media sources will continue to be important as reliable, trusted sources.
  • Personally liked Valkyrie better than Rheingold. As for paying to watch internet video on a cell phone, basic cable costs $42 a month already, the picture is a lot better, and you can keep the footage for posterity.

  • Check out the "up and coming" version of Pivot [pivotlog.net] (GPL CMS System). It will have moblogging capabilities.
    more info [sourceforge.net]
  • Buzznet is back as a moblog, and it's community based. Right now there are a few locations that can be posted to, but any event/location can be community blogged to. http://www.buzznet.com [buzznet.com]
  • coming to you live on Network 23.

    Video + Blogging = Max Headroom
  • by shokk (187512)
    That's right, no ideas. Just keep leeching off the old ones. Moblog? Ho hum.
  • by Myself (57572) on Friday July 11, 2003 @02:26PM (#6418278) Journal
    The problem with the camera phones and such, as they presently exist, is interception. The government already has the infrastructure to monitor your mobile phone's calls and messages. When something happens, it'll be very easy to see which subversive free-thinkers are sending pictures of the event. Forget about having anything like the Zapruder film next time something big happens. Accounts of the event will be instantly censored for quick coverup by big brother.

    For blogging to be useful for any news more controversial than your pet's latest chew-toy, we need a mechanism for censorship resistance. Communications between phones and internet hosts should be strongly encrypted, and users should be able to choose anonymity for publishing sensitive material.

    Freenet is nearly perfect for this. It's a little too bulky for the current generation of Java-capable phones, but in a year or two we should see handsets with very powerful JVMs. Freenet 'blogs, or flogs, will become increasingly important as awareness of government eavesdropping increases. Being able to update a flog and instantly add pictures, right from your phone at the scene of an event, will vastly improve the reporting of important news. At the moment this would require carrying a laptop, which is not only bulky, it's conspicuous.

    Bloggers need to embrace Freenet en masse, to secure their right to uncensored, optionally anonymous publication and communication. If you could say anything at all, what would you publish? You can, please do.
    • two isolated incidents....

      the exposure itself serves as a prevention for violent action by the government...instant censorship? I dont even think the govt has the capacity to do such a thing, aside from shutting down all major networks, phone, power, tv, etc. And freenet wouldnt stop that....
  • Rheingold (Score:2, Interesting)

    by blair1q (305137)
    Howard got lucky with The WELL, and now he thinks he's a "visionary".

    Anyone else remember Electric Minds? The most over-hyped, under-valued message board system in the history of the Internet?

    That was Howard's still-born baby.

    I wonder if Softbank ever got their money back for "investing" in that disaster.
  • by Geartest.com (582779) on Friday July 11, 2003 @03:23PM (#6418834) Homepage
    We recently published an article about the panel discussion of blogs and moblogs [geartest.com] at this year's annual Canadian Association of Journalists (inter)national conference [www.caj.ca].

    While the panelists agreed that blogging and moblogging doesn't automatically qualify as journalism, they did say that it CAN be journalism if journalistic principles are applied.

    One of the more interesting comments was from technology journalist David Akin, who said that experiments that enlist moblogging citizens with camera phones to send their photos to news sites may be cool and fun and interesting, but it's not news by longshot, mainly because they lack the professional journalistic skills to identify what qualifies as news.

Money will say more in one moment than the most eloquent lover can in years.

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