Fergus McContrary is right to say that every citizen is a potential journalist thanks to blogging. Unfortunately it is not always that easy for every citizen.
Lots of people and businesses want a blog to show off their knowledge and expertise. The only problem is, sitting down and writing 700 words onto a blank piece of paper twice a week is very, very difficult for most. People are just too busy or lack the confidence in their writing ability. I met one of the largest PR firms in the world recently. They write blog posts for their clients for a living and yet their own blog had not been updated in over a year!
Twitter has helped enormously. It lets people join the debate and show their expertise in a matter of seconds without having to be a great writer. The only thing is that Tweets are seen one second and gone the next - so give no real presence or permanency.
I am no writer - but this tool that I am using to write this post lets me grab a piece of Fergus' story, comment with my own views and then add in other people’s tweets to give context. It has let me create a post in not much more time than it takes to tweet but which will hopefully have the presence and permanency of a long form blog post.
Passle and other tools like it will help make it more realistic for every citizen to become a potential journalist.
The separate categorisation of columnists, reporters, bloggers and interested readers is becoming meaningless. Every citizen is now a potential journalist. News and opinion are a conversation.