I hadn’t encountered the concept of turbo journalism before. According to Online Journalism Review, turbo journalism was originated by Norway’s Nettavisen. Extraordinarily, 5% of Norwegians visit the Nettavisen site daily and 74% are familiar with the brand.
The principle on which Nettavisen is based is “skriv kort og fort”, write short and quick. Its staff works entirely online. There is no tramping the streets for a story.
To my mind, that might make for a useful service, but I question whether that counts as journalism. Unlike the online debates on the merits or otherwise of professional and amateur journalism, Nettavisen’s concept relies on a kind of human-operated screen-scraping. There’s none of the personal intelligence, experience and sifting that informs the best of journalism, professional or amateur.
And a day when most people relied on a news source like Nettavisen will be a day when the masters of media manipulation will call all the shots, rather than just most of them.
Globalisation for all
David Golding has pointed out Amartya Sen’s latest thoughts on globalisation. Nobel prizewinner Sen has an unequalled record as an advocate for the world’s poor. “Globalisation is neither especially new nor, in general, a folly. Over thousands of years, globalisation has contributed to the progress of the world, through travel, trade, migration, spread of cultural influences and dissemination of knowledge and understanding. To have stopped globalisation would have done irreparable harm to the progress of humanity.”