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Bloggers vs. Journalists: Can we end the debate?

By definition, a blogger is a person who runs or owns an independent blog based on opinion while a journalist works to collect and distribute news based on facts and information. It’s almost the same isn’t it? One works independently while the other provides content to a newspaper.

If I had to pick between the two, I’d rather be a blogger. Why? Bloggers are passionate about their content. They start blogs because they want to. The blog is usually centered around one topic and the topic is something the blogger knows well and the writing doesn’t feel like work or another pay check. It’s a hobby.

A blog is not subject to the scrutiny of the editor’s red pen. Your blog is yours. You are your own worst critic. If you don’t like it, you don’t publish it. You handle the editing and you’re subjected to your own opinion. Also, you don’t live and die by deadlines. You set the pace for your blog. I can’t even remember the last time I wrote in any of my own blogs. I still love to blog but there’s no one holding me accountable there.

As a journalist, you must refrain from opinion in your news story which frankly makes news stories a bit boring and redundant (again, just my opinion). After a few sentences, you get the gist of the content and move on whereas a blogger can add story, embellish a little, and perhaps add their own commentary. The beauty of being a blogger is taking a journalist’s story and giving their opinion about it. See, how that’s automatically a win?

Journalists live and die by the truth. They don’t blog. This is something they went to school for. They are obsessed with form, quotes, and facts. Bloggers loosely follow the rules of grammar which bothers me a bit. I read several blogs and a slight typo, run on sentence, etc sets me off. If you’re passionate about your content, you really should take the time to edit but that’s my personal opinion as an outsider and a blogger. Once again, a blogger doesn’t have to abide to any of those rules. Their work isn’t part of a major publication unless the blog itself become popular.

In the end, both have their redeeming qualities. When I want straight facts, I turn to CNN or any other major news source. Heck, sometimes even Twitter which is sometimes referred to as a micro news blog.  Those in the blogosphere have little interest in journalism or fact finding because it’s their opinion or hearsay however it’s still good fodder and fluff reading material. However, a blog can be a good training ground for a future journalist. Just recently, a Huffington Post blogger won a Pulitzer. There is hope for us bloggers. So can we all live peacefully now as journalists and bloggers or is there still some room for debate?

What do you think? Will this debate ever end? Are you more of a journalist or a blogger? We want to hear from you!

photo credit: PIX-JOCKEY (Roberto Rizzato) via photo pin cc

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