On November 20, 2008, CJR and Consumer Reports staged a conference called “Consumer Revolution on the Web: Opportunities and Dangers for Journalism.” The conference was designed to address questions about how professional journalists should cover consumer issues at a time when big-name bloggers, online vigilantes, and anonymous user-reviewers have turned word-of-mouth into a powerful weapon and traditional consumer reporters are falling victim to budget cuts. Consumer Reports editorial director Kevin McKean moderated a panel discussion on how to strike a balance between professional and amateur consumer reporting. Sitting on the panel were veteran consumer reporter Trudy Lieberman, On the Media host Bob Garfield, The Consumerist editor Ben Popken, Pulitzer-winning reporter David Cay Johnston, and Harry McCracken, editor of Technologizer. Audio of the panel is available here.
Are Consumers the Right Watchdogs?
Audio of the panel discussion on amateur vs. professional consumer reporting
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