Mass media is built around the concept of gatekeeping, which is the process of selecting and filtering news and deciding on whether or not to allow them to the published or broadcasted. Already the field of journalism has so many obstacles that don’t allow them to publish the truth of a news story, in a world of spin doctors, press releases and the limitations of time and resources. Shouldn’t we be able to hear all of the truthful news, not just what some company is deciding to feed us? Gatekeeping is especially seen in topics like the war where WikiLeaks is condemned for ‘exposing too much truth’ and certain events in Pakistan not receiving any coverage in America.
Online information offers an alternative to gatekeeping; this alternative is gatewatching. Gatewatching allows the audience to decide and curate prevalent stories. A prime example of this is Reddit, where users upvote or downvote content, determining popularity and what is seen. With these websites there is information everywhere, it is endless, and it’s up to the user to figure out what information they want in this decentralised process.
Information is far from scarce on the internet which is why the quality of the information becomes more valuable than scarcity. Though when information is not following, scarce information is valuable. Even with the internet the value of scarce information is still seen. In 2006 two miners were trapped in Beaconsfield mine, their story was sold channel nine for allegedly $2.6 million. Nowhere else could information of this story be found, making it scarce and hence valuable.