As part of the BBC's SuperPower season - its new special series on the internet which starts today - BBC News online is linking up with Global Voices, a non-profit blogging network of citizen journalists, to add commentary to news stories from around the world.
Steve Hermann, editor of the BBC News website, says on the BBC Editors' Blog: "We think Global Voices, which specialises in giving individuals the tools and support to comment and report on the issues that matter to them, could add an interesting extra dimension to some of our news coverage.
"So over the next two weeks we'll be selecting from, and linking to, relevant posts from Global Voices' network of 200 bloggers and citizen journalists and we'll also be asking Global Voices editors to give their views on how the mainstream media handle the news."
Ivan Sigal, Global Voices' executive director, is quoted as saying: "The idea that citizen journalism is somehow opposed to or in conflict with traditional journalism is now clearly past; it's evident that both exist in symbotic relationship to one another, with many opportunities to collaborate on the creation of news, storytelling and distribution of content."
On the Global Voices site he says: "This past year has been particularly eye-opening in terms of the increasing interplay between mainstream media and citizen journalism. Events in Mumbai, Moldova, Iran, Haiti, and now Chile are but a few examples in which the world has been eager to make immediate and direct contact with citizens in crisis in local contexts. These citizens may have had blogs, Twitter accounts, and cell phones for years, but only in the last year has the mainstream media adopted the narrative of citizen media as an integrated element in their news reporting."
- Global Voices was founded in 2005 by former CNN Beijing and Tokyo bureau chief, Rebecca MacKinnon and technologist and Africa expert, Ethan Zuckerman while they were both fellows at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. The idea for the project grew out of an international bloggers’ meeting held at Harvard in December 2004. It began as a simple blog but has expanded rapidly due to patronage from Reuters and other supporters.