You’ve got to read this.
It’s a terrific column by C.J. Cornell for MediaShift Idea Lab about the Crystal Cox case. She’s the Oregon blogger who found herself on the wrong end of a lawsuit after she blogged about a company that she alleged was guilty of bankruptcy fraud. But she couldn’t prove it without revealing a source, and she wouldn’t do that — claiming that she is protected by Oregon’s shield law.
A judge disagreed, and she’s been ordered to pay $2.5 million to the wronged party. She has vowed to fight on.
So, what is a journalist? Or, as another journalism thinker put it, what is journalism? Anyone who can afford a decent laptop or cellphone, these days, is capable of disseminating information to as many other people as he/she is willing to try to attract via social media.
Let’s get this down to a single, provocative question: Should there be some certification/licensing of journalists? (Okay, and one follow up): Should a journalism degree from an accredited institution be equivalent to certification?
I’d love to hear your thoughts on the pros and cons of such a notion. Go.