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Kirill Koktysh on bloggers and topical problems of journalism

Kirill Koktysh, political scientist, associate professor of the political theory department of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations, has given an interview to the TV program Week.

On the main day of discussion at the Congress [of Russian Press in Minsk], I got the impression that traditional journalists, media managers are worried, and sometimes even frightened, let's say, by the competition from so-called civil journalism, bloggers, simply put. What do you think about this?

Kirill Koktysh, Associate Professor of the Department of Political Theory of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations:
I would say that it's not competition that worries them. Disturbing is the flow of information, which simply doubles every few years. The amount of information is growing while human abilities to understand this information did not change. As a result, we get a misinformed and confused recipient of information, the viewer, the listener, the reader, who in fact is less and less oriented in the problems around. It turns out, mosaic consciousness becomes, unfortunately, a reality. And this is a problem, because in fact it can be solved in different ways.

On the one hand, you can, of course, go wide - and this was offered by a number of speakers, including Mr. Venediktov, who introduced social network editors.

And on the other hand, you can go and qualitatively deep into, cultivating the discerning viewer, the demanding listener, the reader who will demand understandable content. Probably, this dictates other requirements to the media, because it is necessary somehow to give the reader, the consumer of information, the tools of analysis. At least, the publication itself should be well understood in these tools.

Working with a metaphor, understanding how you want and what you want to achieve allows you to very accurately design that system of metaphors and the message that is broadcast to the viewer. Perhaps the knowledge of how to work, at least with some basic concepts, is something that traditional media need today in order to understand this coordinate system and understand what you want to convey to your information consumer. And, most importantly, not just indulge listeners' taste, but also "breed" these needs.

Bloggers try to chase the needs of people and they become successful persons in terms of media popularity.

Kirill Koktysh:
Not really. They cover the breadth, but do not cover in depth. In fact, if you go down from the top of the needs all the lower and lower, then the scope of audience will be as wide as possible.

Good is the following analogy: if you break a glass of water and give the water full freedom, then it will spread out on the table. A glass, limiting its freedom, thereby lifts it up. In this regard, probably, it's time not to go in breadth, but rather, breed the top. Moreover, such a trend has already started. After all, printed media traditionally differ from electronic ones in that the reader first of all perceives logic and structure. That is, when I read the printed text, in any case I look at the logical moments and assess them as convincing or unconvincing. It is clear that television has a different logic, the radio has a different logic, but the printed text in the history of civilization actually gave rise to analytics as a hypostasis of civilization. Now the Washington Post increases the number of printed copies. The New York Times is doing the same.

Is it reasonable?

Kirill Koktysh:
This is justified: subscription increases, the demand for decent analytics increases, when you simply cannot track the number of facts that you see and cannot even distinguish between real facts and fakes. What is the difference between blogging journalism and media journalism? There is no responsibility for verifying facts: they write their opinion. He created the media, he broadcasts it. And this opinion can have no relation to reality. But those who believe it can perceive this as a reality. It turns out to be purely postmodern.

European analytics, except for Sweden, Britain and France, unfortunately, was reduced to reprinting the Washington Post or the New York Times. Therefore, in this respect, these two publications are absolutely critical.

There is growth of demand for logic, for an understandable consistent statement. You have obligations as to what you write and you explain to your reader that it is interesting, important and meaningful. The demand for this is beginning to grow, and this is quite a healthy trend. It is clear that electronic journalism should complement the existing one. But should not be enemies.

Kirill Koktysh on bloggers and topical problems of journalism