“But the recent failure of crowd-sourced news photos of Hurricane Sandy, and the shortage of coverage of other climate change-fueled disasters around the world, demonstrate how far we are from truly democratizing the medium of photography. Photographers worry that the lowering of technological barriers means “everyone’s a photographer now,” but in fact, the number of people who can take and share news photos is still limited by economics, infrastructure and geography.
Photos—good ones —can drive news coverage. But it’s hard to say for sure that we’d know more about how people are coping in Haiti or Cuba or Nigeria if everyone in those countries had a smartphones and Instagram accounts. Good photos take enterprise and curiousity—more photos of fallen trees aren’t enough to get American editors and readers to shed their blinkered focus on news from the developed world. But given the economics of newsgathering now, the media is unlikely to restore their budgets for foreign bureaus or overseas reporting. So who’s left to provide insights on the lives of people far from media centers?”
A thought-provoking read about citizen journalism on PDN. (and follow the links, some compelling material there too).