Change is the only constant thing in this world. In the past, it was not easy for ordinary citizens to get into the mass media. But now, citizen journalists are no longer rare.
Many people are taking part in this storytelling industry, and technology has made it incredibly simple for them to do so with the use of a cell phone, laptop, and Internet connection. In fact, technology has made it a lot easier for them and harder for people who actually spent years studying journalism and dreaming of getting a job in a newspaper. Why? Because we cannot escape the fact that newspapers are slowly becoming obsolete, and other forms of media, which are easily accessible to citizen journalists, have become more and more popular.
But I still believe that journalism is a significant field to study in school. The reason is simple: The world is still in need of journalists, of people who are equipped with the right skills and can properly do what journalists are expected to do.
Journalists do not merely tell stories. They tell stories that are true and relevant to society. They are responsible for the dissemination of information that people can use to help make their lives better. We cannot put these responsibilities on the shoulders of our citizen journalists, who are not properly trained for these tasks. Journalists spent a lot of time in school to prepare for the job. They are well trained in telling stories, and possess enough knowledge about ethics. They know when it is right and not right for them to run a story. These are among the things that citizen journalists lack, and it will take them a long time before they can acquire these skills and knowledge.
But despite the fact that journalists are still needed in this world, we cannot overlook the fact that the traditional media are slowly dying. Thus, as a journalism student, I have to be open to constant change. The world is developing and progressing, and a lot of things have changed because of the innovations brought about by technology. The world is moving forward and there is nothing we can do to stop it. We must adapt to change faster than anybody else, because it is our responsibility to provide information in whatever medium we tell our stories. The advancement of technology must never hinder us from doing our duties as journalists.
Marie Ernestine Torro, 18, is from Iligan City. She is working for a degree in mass communication at Ateneo de Davao University.