Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Kompas and Kompasiana

The daily printed Kompas has not only ventured into Kompas Cyber Media, but also into citizen journalism through its

I remember that the founder and owner of Kompas Group, Jakob Oetama, had his skepticism toward news written by citizens. He told me that in the a short conversation before the press conference of the Indonesian-Japan Expo 2008. So I was really interested in knowing his opinion now...about one and a half year after that moment. Especially now, when Kompasiana had already opened its door to public contributors. Kompasiana doesn't need editorial permission to get published. It is really on your own...just a click away! Personally I think that editorial is still very important. Wikimu didn't have a very strict editorial process like the one I've found in OhmyNews International(OMNI). I learned a lot about journalism from OMNI but I also learned a lot about the new media from the comments that came from Wikimu's readers.

I shared my wonderful day with Kompasianers in a writing "Kompas Menulis Bersama Pembaca (Catatanku dari Kompasiana Modis)". Kompas is now starting to ask readers to write. From some articles that I've read in both Kompasiana and the printed Kompas, I can say that Kompas is now writing with its readers, hopefully that will help them evolving as printed media through the changing need of the community.

Another writing from Linda Djalil, a Kompasianer who was once a professional journalist, made me write about how I've met Jakob Oetama in the Indonesian-Japan Expo 2008. Linda wrote a letter for Pak Jakob, the founder and owner Kompas. In the letter she also revealed how she was once gave a wrong name (jokingly) to a Kompas' journalist, and it was printed out without being checked. I like to ask for the press release when I came to an event. It used to be preserved only for journalists. It was not easy as a citizen to get a press release, while it is important for us to do our check and recheck too. If it is the goodie bag that matter, actually that is not important for me. It is those piece of papers which I valued (and hopefully it has something in it, as sometimes the content is not really very informative, but I do need it especially for names). I always think that giving a chance for a blogger to get a press release would help eliminate those fake journalists (known here as wartawan bodrex), but there is always the possibility of people looking at a blogger as a "fake journalist". It really depends on the personality of the blogger, so I can't insist on my opinion. We'll see through the expanding horizon of citizen journalism.

Mas Isjet, one of the administrators in Kompasiana asked me to write about OMNI. I do need time to prepare that kind of writing, but may be I'll be happy to share a bit of my experience being a citizen reporter for both Wikimu and OMNI.

These days, time is more valuable than anything else. Being a citizen reporter made me think of myself as a real citizen. I demanded myself to exist not only in online world but also in the real world (I did have my share of being a citizen in the neighbourhood, but these days I just really try to be better). My real world is around my house, so I won't be catching up with those celebrity bloggers. Yet, that is why I love being a citizen reporter, because I can also present my views in my own words, using my own free time. I can write after mid-night or very early in the morning, things that would never be possible to have in the real world. How can I go out to chat with my neighbour (a fellow housewife) at midnight? That's impossible in the real world, but I can do it in the internet. So writing for citizen journalism websites help me to go out without really going out of the walls of my home.

Kompasiana is the first citizen journalism outlet from the mainstream media. I heard that Politikana is also belongs to Tempo. I thought it was only founded by people who are closed to Tempo, and in the progress it was supported by Tempo. I do need to do more interviews to find it out. Yet, with Kompas and its public Kompasiana, I'm hoping to see another approach toward citizen journalism.

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