Monday, January 24, 2011

Elgin Low's Reflections

1. These two words help to distinguish and define newspaper articles, as some may be “gossip” and some may be reports. For instance, the reporter may want to say, “It was a bloody massacre.” But then, without the classification of the two words, he may end up saying “Ooooh, that was one bloodthirsty massacre”,where the adding of just a few different words, can give the impression that whatever the reporter says may not be true and he is simply giving an opinion, and was exaggerating it at that. Thus, it is required for reporters and journalists to specifically produce a phrase, sentence, or report according to what meets their requirements. (i.e. state a fact for a fact and not change it to an opinion.)

2.As the article says, the limitations currently are that the information uploaded by anyone is near instantly and thus it is dangerous as there can be faulty information, as the people uploading such information do not need to verify their truthfulness, and often people have the impulse just to “post as you go”. Other limitations also include, but is not limited to, the ability to readily edit anything that is posted on the internet. I.e. anything on the net is unsafe as it can be edited by any other person. Such an example is wikipedia, where people used to delete the actual true informations and spam non-relevant information, as long as you had a wiki account. All of such limitations can be controlled. Common ways are, take wikipedia for an example, checking the information submitted first before it is actually allowed to be viewed by the public on the net. If this one rule is not adhered to, the wiki administrators will issue a warning of spam, then if the offender persists, that warning will lead to an all-out ban. Some sites, like forums, also allow people to post their comments on any article posted. Therefore, if someone submitted faulty information, anyone who views has the choice to post a comment and correct the author’s post. There are also cyber police to stop all this from happening, and if that is not enough, sites can be reported for misinformation.

3.Readers should also be situationally aware, and not just believe in everything a website posts. As the information could be faulty, readers have the responsibility to double check, by means of going to other websites to cross-check the information read. A classic example is wikipedia, where after several readers cross checked information, found out that wikipedia was actually not such a reliable site, as it was fraught with faulty information.

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