On April 4, 2007, I attended the first meeting of the Silicon Valley chapter of the Social Media Club. Chris Heuer, Kristie Wells, Mike McGrath, and employees of KNTV (NBC 11) helped start the chapter and host the meeting. (Ron Fredericks had connected Chris and me and then I attended two meetings of SMC’s San Francisco chapter.)
The meeting was based on participant discussion, significant amounts of which focused on topics such as “how do people know the extent to which to trust information about which they learn?” and “how can people distinguish ‘professional journalists’ from ‘other journalists’?”
I was intrigued by Linda Sullivan’s (President/General Manager, KNTV) description – during discussion at one table – of her station’s giving digital cameras to people (including, for example, a wounded military veteran) who take pictures based on their daily lives. Station jounalists develop stories based on the pictures. Such suggests another topic – blurring the distinction between being a part of a story and being a journalist covering the story. It would seem that the people with cameras serve to some extent in both roles.