• Further blurs the line between who is and is not a journalist.
Ideally, open journalism creates greater transparency, accuracy, and trust—OpenFile is a successful example. My concern, though, is that in an age where it is already difficult to decide who qualifies as a journalist, a move like this only makes that question more confusing. OpenFile is a specific concept—it was founded solely for the purpose of open journalism. But for Ladies’ Home Journal to change this dramatically is a risky move. Though there are a few exceptions, so far the internet has been the great untamed wild of ‘journalism,’ where anyone from ages four to 99 can write a blog post about their day.
I do not like the idea. I am all for higher transparency—and I think it is great that readers can become more involved with the magazine—but having them write the majority of the content seems like a bad move. Maybe it’s the change-resistant part of me writing this, but journalism should be written by people who spend their days absorbed in the subject; by people who genuinely care about what is going down on paper and know how to craft a compelling story.