Do we really need investigative journalist?

Sunday, September 4, 2011

A recent blog begged the question, "what next for investigative journalism in a world of information overload?" The post can be read in entirety here. It made a very compelling case for the need, or rather lack there of, for investigative journalist due to the plethora of information that is now completely at our own disposal. It also made a great one for the reason why we still in fact need it.

At first thought, I immediately jumped to the side that argued we do not need them. I can do just about any "uncovering" whenever I want, however I want, and wherever I want, so why do I still need someone to do it for me? The Internet alone seems to do a pretty incredible job helping me solve any lingering inquires I may have on almost every subject matter.

On second thought, however, I decided I may have made my decision a bit haste-fully. In reality, there are more things I learn from these journalist who seek out the truth than I could ever accomplish on my own. For example, the article mentioned stories that were not new, but still had questions that needed to be answered. It is the work of investigative journalists that solves these unknowns.

The blog also mentioned a crucial role of these investigative individuals as holding power to account. This may be the most important aspect of their jobs because they have the leverage as journalist to see that this happens. If there is not a checks and balances on power, then where does that leave those of us without power? It is the beauty of journalism and investigative journalists that allows this exchange to occur, and allows us as the reader to be more informed, engaged, and active participants of this world.


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