Participatory journalism in Californian paper

The Northwest Voice, a Californian newspaper is experimenting with participatory journalism in which most of the content published in an online edition and a weekly print edition is submitted by community members.

“The people say what’s important to them rather than having a handful of journalists make those judgments on behalf of the community,” publisher Mary Lou Fulton told Wired.

That is an interesting approach since much of the job in journalism traditionally has been to collect, sort and present information that the media judge is important to the public. It reminds me of a statement made by George W. Bush to a reporter: “You’re making a powerful assumption, young man. You’re assuming that you represent the public. I don’t accept that.”

I don’t think that the public necessarily better represents itself when it comes to journalism, but I like the initiative and there are succesful examples like Korean OhmyNews, so who knows, is this the future of journalism?