The CEO and Publisher of The Satcom Media Consults, Mall. Luqman Oluwatoyin Bolakale has granted an Interview on his understanding about Citizens Journalism in Ilorin, the Kwara state.
When asked about His understanding in regards to citizen journalism and forth, he answered;
My understanding about citizen journalism is simply centered as a means of information dissemination which is solely based on public opinion and it’s analysis. However it is the over all collection and collation of information from the public domain.
How do you, as a participating citizen journalist go about your work in terms of gathering and disseminating news content?
You know basically, citizen journalism is all about gathering information from the public domain. So as an active participant of citizen journalism, I also leverage on all public accurate and accessible information within the public. But as a professional I do what is termed as proof checking before disseminating to the public. Because information is power, so as such it must be accurate and devoid of all content that can protest against the ethical practice of a good and professional journalist.
what medium do you use in disseminating news gathered?
I engaged many medium to ensure that I have an accessible information being disseminated which includes, social media and my blog.
Are you concerned about being accountable in your content and disseminating it (with regards to ethical considerations of the media)?
Yes. Upholding the ethical practices of the profession has been my topmost concern Because it is a portion of this profession that can’t be compromisd. Therefore, we must sustain the credence of the profession.
If yes, What are the frame of mind that puts you on the path of accountability?
Accountability is one of the important framework that has to be unbiasedly sustained in this line. As such, I often stay conscious of embracing and advancing our accountability as a people’s trusted media outlet. We must continue to be responsible to our readers and viewers, so they will continue to embrace the trust they have in us. Part of it is to also set principles guide-lines for our content. After the introduction of this media house to be public, we launched an online survey to gather people’s view on our reportage accountability. By that, we were able to identify our strength and weakness.
In your own opinion, what modalities should be put in place to check excesses on the part of citizen journalist/journalism?
I will suggest a regulating body for that, and the citizen journalists on their own should do self checkmating of their members, this can be done by having an association that will closely oversee the affairs of the members thereby checking the excessiveness of their members. In Kwara we have domestic example of such which includes ASCOMP.
Identify challenges faced in the line of duty and what probable solution would you suggest?
One of the challenges but not limited to are finance, audience and insecurity amongst others. To start a media channel and house requires adequate finance and resources. As well as making in an obligation that the security of the journalist sometimes is not always guaranteed. Imagine a journalist giving live reportage of Boko Haram insurgency, herdsmen and bandit all these involves enough of personal risks.
Government should therefore improve on our security architecture, apparatuses and work on efficient and effectiveness of the gatekeepers. By doing that, the insecurity challenges of journalists and the general public can be secured abd guarantee.
On finance, government should endeavor to empower young people on media capacity and look on how to formulate media friendly implementable policies and polity.