How contemporary journalism works

7 09 2009

A number of forward-thinking journalists in Germany have issued a manifesto. I am reproducing an abbreviated version. The original version (in German) is available at

  1. The internet is different.
  2. The internet is a pocket-sized media empire.
  3. The internet is society is the internet.
  4. Internet freedom is inalienable.
  5. The internet is the triumph of information.
  6. The internet is changing improving journalism.
  7. The network requires networking.
  8. Links bring value, quotes are a form of recognition.
  9. The internet is the new home for political discussion.
  10. The new freedom of the press is freedom of opinion.
  11. More is more – there’s no such thing as too much information.
  12. Tradition is not a business model.
  13. On the internet, copyright becomes a civic duty.
  14. The internet has many currencies
  15. What’s in the network stays in the network.
  16. Quality is the most important quality
  17. All for all.

Translation by Jeff Jarvis with some minor edits by me. Amendments welcome.

  1. Denis Pelli was kind enough to point out that it should be civic duty (not civil)
  2. Tim Schlüter tweeted that the more appropriate gloss for ‘Gesellschaft’ in 3 is ‘society’ (not business).
  3. Jenna L. Brinning, a professional translator, has posted a proper English version of the original manifest.
  4. One of the authors, Janko Roettgers, says the manifesto was written in response to the Hamburg manifesto.
  5. Additional declarations have also been suggested by David Goldenberg

18. A viable Internet depends on media literacy and critical thinking.
19. Anonymity is the enemy of the Internet.




2 responses

8 09 2009
Denis Pelli

Very nice. Thank you. I don’t know German, but shouldn’t “civil” in 13 be “civic”? “Civic duty” is widely use to connote social responsibility. “Civil duty” is a logical construct, but never used.

8 09 2009
Tom Van Hout

oh yes indeed: civic duty. Much obliged, Denis.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: