Blogging on the ice: Connecting audiences with climate-change sciences

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Thorsen, Einar (2013)

Scientists working in Antarctica have recognized the need to counteract problems associated with mainstream media's treatment of the climate-change crisis. For this reason, several of them have assumed the role of citizen journalists in order to report on the effects of global warming first-hand. More specifically, they have chosen to communicate directly with the general public through official or personal blogs. In so doing they are capitalizing on the way the Internet is changing science news and journalism. This article draws on an analysis of more than 50 Antarctic blogs published during the International Polar Year (2007-08), as well as data from e-interviews with a broad selection of bloggers, in order to examine how scientists 'on the ice' act as citizen journalists. The article explores the idea of citizen journalism as education and the extent to which the scientists achieve an unmediated form of communication through their blogging efforts. It concludes by suggesting this new form of citizen journalism, beyond raising people's awareness of the climate-change crisis, also signals an important way in which mainstream environmental reporting can be reinvigorated. © 2013 Intellect Ltd Article.
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