Thanks to the advent of social media sites, so-called “citizen journalism” is on the rise. Myra Martin of The Straits Times, Singapore’s largest and most influential daily, reports that a recent survey found a majority of these casual writers are between the ages of 15 to 24. Conducted by students of Singapore Polytechnic, the survey questioned approximately 800 people between the ages of 15 and 35. Among its (perhaps surprising) findings was that the verification of accuracy was a top priority for many citizen journalists. Further, around 80 per cent still found “traditional media more reliable than citizen journalism in terms of credibility.”
Mrs. Lam Yoke Peng, director of Singapore Polytechnic’s School of Communication, Arts and Sciences, stressed the issue of credibility among citizen journalists in an interview with the Straits Times. She noted that, as citizen journalism continues to grow, “the credibility of information becomes an important issue we need to be aware of.” The mediums most used by Singapore’s citizen journalists include social media networks like Facebook and Twitter, in addition to video sharing sites. It was also found that citizen journalism has had an impact the formation of political views and spending habits within the youth.
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