QOD: Credible News?

Last week, a discussion came about regarding DailyTimes and its ‘credibility’. How *do* u rate a newspaper or journalist credible? On another note, who do classify as a news source?

Many newspapers have their own points of view, their affiliations with different points of view and the personal views of the editors. This seeps into the type of articles that they publish, hence often the same story can be published using different viewpoints by different papers. Who do u believe?

Recently, blogs such as the one your reading now, has been focused on the happenings in the city and reporting them. Washington Post recently included ‘Mobile Journalists’ on their team, or MoJos, who do pretty much the same as we are doing. So i believe my second question would be.. Do we rate as a credible news source?

28 Comments so far

  1. Kashif Vohra (unregistered) on December 5th, 2006 @ 4:46 pm

    Most of the time we discuss on this platform about local problems like traffic jam in Karachi, underpass and like that. We can judge credibility of news source if we discuss about national and international affairs because on the level of ours there is no need of dishonesty. We leave yellow journalism for evening news papers.

  2. Arsalaan Haleem (unregistered) on December 5th, 2006 @ 7:18 pm

    I think that yes, KMB can be rated as a credible news source. Most often we(our authors and readers) provide on-the-spot and up-to-date news about latest events and happenings.

  3. UZi (unregistered) on December 5th, 2006 @ 7:23 pm

    The basics of journalism :: The piece that you write should be free of any preconceived notions or bias. Of course, as a human being, you WILL have opinions of your own, but those should stay with you, and should not filter out into the report.

    A “credible” story is where both sides of the picture are presented transparently, and the writer’s opinion/bias is not visible. Like my editor says, “the facts should speak for themselves.”

    As for whether KMB is a credible news source, read the definitions above, and go figure! :D

  4. original-anon (unregistered) on December 5th, 2006 @ 7:36 pm

    Arsalaan Haleem – that was a jke, right?

  5. Adnan Siddiqi (unregistered) on December 5th, 2006 @ 7:47 pm

    Arsalaan Haleem – that was a jke, right?

    Orignal, I think so.

    KMB only rocked an year back during earthquake activities and this website was a great source to know updates and provide necessary information. After that incident, this site has become a platform of “lemme post my favorite stuff”.

  6. Arsalaan Haleem (unregistered) on December 5th, 2006 @ 8:11 pm

    @Uzi or Urooj: I wholeheartedly agree with the definition that you have given above, and in reality it SHOULD BE applied, but then we all know that it doesn’t always happen so.

    As Mansoor have mentioned above, every newspaper has its own ‘tone’ or usually they ‘broadcast’ their own owners or editors point of views – and I rightly agree so. Because if this wasn’t the case, then we would only have one newspaper of every language, and not hundreds, as it is the case today, in most countries. In Karachi alone, some 50 odd newspapers of various languages are published every day.

    @Original-Anon and Adnan Siddiqi: If only two fo you, can take some time out to monitor other online news sources, you will notice, that nowadays, reporters are picking up stories from personal blogs. And as Mansoor rightly pointed out, many papers across the world are now outsourcing their work to Mojos, who in most cases maintain their own blogs and also pick up stories from others’ blogs as well.

    My two cents worth..

  7. zahra (unregistered) on December 5th, 2006 @ 8:39 pm

    i, not being in karachi, regularly use KMB to find out what’s happening in the city. so in that sense i do treat it as a “credible” news source, in fact you’ll find news that would never appear in a formal newspaper or something. As far as journalistic integrity or impartiality goes, im NOT disappointed with KMB because i don’t EXPECT metbloggers to practice those kind of rules and things….they’re not journalists! they’re simple citizens who’re reporting what they see and experience, and what could be better than seeing things through the eyes of someone who experiences what they’re talking about. Better than some pushy, outsider, stuck-up journalist reporting on things through his/her point of view. as simple as that…

    if you want dry facts and journalistic jargon there are plenty of newspapers and agencies dishing that out, but always remember, no matter how hard they try that cant completely rid themselves of biases and personal prejudices…so dont think you’re getting the “real” deal even then, its just a sham

  8. Adnan Siddiqi (unregistered) on December 5th, 2006 @ 9:25 pm

    Dear Arsalan, I am not saying that Mobile Journalism or ‘MoJos’ is not credible. I am just disagreeing that KMB is a credible source. Sorry I didn’t mean to hurt any one but it’s my opinion and one is free to reject and refute it.

    Orignal might have some other reasons to disagree with you. I am well aware that many news resources refer personal blogs and my own blog was referred fewer times by some news sources but it doesn’t mean they RELY on it, they rather refer it as an “Alternative source” or they caption it as ‘What’s bloggers saying about certain issue’.

  9. dan (unregistered) on December 5th, 2006 @ 11:18 pm

    Another difference between ‘mojos’ and KMB bloggers is that ‘mojos’ are subject to editorial review (for grammar, style, structure, spelling etc) whereas KMB bloggers are not.

  10. Arsalaan Haleem (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 12:56 am

    @Adnan: I am also truly sorry, if I had came out as a bit blunt, but my point is just to maintain that a ‘news source’ in a traditional definition is a ‘source’ that provides up-to-date news.

    And now-a-days, with blogging on the rise, I think it is safe to define KMB as a ‘news-source’.

    And Adnan, if we are talking about credibility, give me an example of one medium, which in your opinion is a credible news source?

    As a reader of blogs for the last 18 months, I would say, or to me, blogs have more credibility than any other source of information, incl. newspapers and TV.

  11. naveed (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 2:54 am

    Even on local issues the newspapers can have different viewpoints. I remember when I read the news of Liaquatabad underpass ‘cave in’ during Eid holidays in Dawn I was puzzled because I was constantly using the underpass at that time. Yes the road was in a bad shape but it was always open for traffic and no part of underpass had fallen or caved in. Dawn (which is a pro PPP newspaper) had obviously exaggerated.

  12. wasiq (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 5:27 am

    ” and now we take you to the blog room where the bloggers are blogging about a blog and see what we can find and blog about it…..”(cnn election o6)

    1.KMB is doing a great job informing about the latest happenings about our favorite cities..but it does not do the front-line journalism as the bloggers do not have the will or the resources to chase a news worthy story….

    2. the top bloggers are doing fifty to thirty post a month plus they feel compelled to answer to the comments made by anonymous people from around the world…. does this fit into any definition of journalism…? atleast not to the Uzi’s….

    3.too be very frank and very honest(which is so hard to believe) most of the time iam more interested in the comments on the older post than a new post…and comments to the comments…which i believe is neither news nor credible…..

    4. what was the question again….?

    5. i miss the great Teeth Maestro….any credible news about him…?

  13. MB (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 7:29 am

    Personally I think KMB at its own level is doing a good job. The resources that we have are limited but yet we try to get to the news, not only in words but pics and videos (of our own or from others help).

    One very important thing, if any one of you have started to note in MEDIA is the way BBC, CNN have started to include the content a user, viewer, reader has by new ideas in which a normal person, like you and me even can post a message to them and they will after checking few things will include it when the deliver the news. CNN’s ireport & BBC’s Have your say is a big example on this. And this one, where users submit their content. People from all over the world submit their content which has a lot of variety and they also submit their suggestions and questions. It goes to prove how much the top players value blogs and the reporting by ordinary people. YAHOO doesn’t like to stay behind.

    We do have many constraints also like the post should have something to do with Karachi. As someone pointed out initially why we don’t include things that are happening internationally etc. If it has anything to do with Karachi we do try.

    Having said all this we would love to see suggestions from you guys. I will also suggest KMB bosses to get authors from all over the Karachi to get the best out of it.

  14. mansoor (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 9:26 am

    thankyou guys. its been a very eye opening discussion.

    adnan: ofcourse your free to have your opinions and to express them, which is why i think you keep coming back here :)

    urooj: that gives me food for thought.. thanks

    dan: we’re NOT?? i think ‘faisal’ and a few others are doing a pretty good job of doing just that. plus, we *do* use spellcheckers at times too u know :) lolz

  15. Adnan Siddiqi (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 10:07 am

    which in your opinion is a credible news source?

    I agree with you that so far no news source appears credible so why should KMB be considred a credible source. Actually the other points come in mind that whether KMB is a serious information source? I doubt so when I see majority of irrevelent and *personal* posts here. Repeating a single issue again and again and again for Instance issue of Blogspot ban,traffic jams due to construction etc etc and I think few people might would agree about it. As I mentioned that I really appreciated KMB authors at the time of earthquake activities and whoever participated at that time deserves a medal because if you go thru archieve of Oct2005 and Novv2005, you will find a big difference in quality.

    @Mansoor: bad habbit I must say. As Ghalib said, “Chouth ti nahi moo ye kafir lagi huwi”. =)

    I have been visiting this site for one and half year so have got used to of it. It has no relation with crediblility or any sort of Inspiration. I still like posts by dr,omar and imtiaz. Ramla also used to make good posts when she was part of KMB and I was one of those people who wanted her to stay here.

  16. SWA (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 10:32 am

    Newspapers are good for run of the mill reports of things, but if I really want insight into how things in the city are going, theres nothing better than keeping up-to-date with the metblogs.

  17. Arsalaan Haleem (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 10:48 am

    @ Adnan: Yes, I also Ramla’s and others’ such as Huma, Saba and all former KBM authors’s posts. I too, wanted Ramla to stay, but then it was her own personal choice to withdraw from this forum.

    Back to the main topic – Adnan, every medium, whether that is a personal blog, a metroblog or a newspaper or even a TV channel, is full of or as Aussie-PK and other Pakistanis of Aussieland would like to call, chock-a-block of relevant as well as with irrelevant stuff.

    Again I would touch on this topic that ‘Credibility’, like beauty is a personal perception. For eg. the readers of The News find their ‘paper’ more credible than Dawn, and vice versa. It is the same story with Jang and Nawa-e-Waqt readership.

  18. kidal (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 10:55 am

    MB, I have personally tried to post at least four times on BBC’s Have Your Say. But it has never made it through the mods. These “forums” are fully moderated and controlled. Which doesn’t make them any different from the biased news stories. It’s just an illusion.

  19. mansoor (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 11:07 am

    arsalan: good point.. i seem to prefer The News to Dawn as well.. but then its a personal preference.

  20. MB (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 11:47 am

    I was just refering to top players shifting onto user content. What eva goes inside is not in my hands.

  21. original-anon (unregistered) on December 6th, 2006 @ 10:15 pm

    Dan – Couldn’t have said it better myself!
    Mansoor, yes we do try to correct, but only the most glaring errors and only sometimes. Most of the times our corrections are not acknowledged or other readers tell us to ‘get a life’ while of course displaying no proof of having one themselves :)(I am quoting from Lynn Truss here).
    Even when acknowledged, they are not followed – e.g. your own use of ‘your’ versus ‘you’re’ :)
    As to the basic question, no KMB is not a news source at all, if I were to look at it as one, I would believe that nothing happened in Karachi last week but rain ,traffic problems and people ate Nihari.

  22. Arsalaan Haleem (unregistered) on December 7th, 2006 @ 12:48 pm

    Original-Anon: If problems created by rain and traffic problems are not news, then what is??

  23. Omar R. Quraishi (unregistered) on December 7th, 2006 @ 3:49 pm

    the dawn is not pro-PPP by design by the way — maybe it comes across that way but there’s no deliberate policy on that — i should know, i worked there for 11-plus years —

  24. Omar R. Quraishi (unregistered) on December 7th, 2006 @ 3:50 pm

    i should also add that i am a professional journalist and find this website quite good from a purely newsy point of view

  25. Arsalaan Haleem (unregistered) on December 7th, 2006 @ 5:52 pm

    Well guys, the famous Omar Q. of Dawn has added further more stars to my comments/thoughts.

    Thank you Omar Q….much appreciated.

  26. Omar R. Quraishi (unregistered) on December 8th, 2006 @ 5:47 pm

    Arsalan — one correction — I am now at The News

  27. wasiq (unregistered) on December 9th, 2006 @ 6:57 am

    famous OMAR Q….are you married….?

  28. Omar R. Quraishi (unregistered) on December 9th, 2006 @ 2:35 pm


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