1.1 Background to the Study
Internet is the worldwide system of interconnected network of more than one computer with the ability to share and exchange files and data from one place to another irrespective of geographical location and time. Information and Communication Technology (ICT) which according to a great Canadian English Professor Marshall McLuhan ,described as what has changed the world into a global village by compressing the world into a single electronic room where information from nooks and crannies of the world can be exploited and disseminated or exchanged within a twinkle of an eye.
Internet is now a new way of gathering news, which offers maximum advantages to Nigerian journalists. Internet has become an encyclopedia of almost all information in the world and most of the information is gathered free unlike that of subscription to news agencies and wire service before journalists can have access to international news and other information globally.
The development of technology most especially in this century has impact on every sphere of human life to include mass media. This has changed the look of the existing media. Because of this, the practice of journalism is no longer in the way of one-dimensional flow of information rather it is interactive and the audience are now part of the information gathering and information distribution. It should be noted that information quality through the internet demands caution as it is questionable since it lack the activities of the gatekeepers who can decide what information to disseminate and what not to make available for the public.
Internet poses many challenges on mass media because mass media is considered “spoon-feed” sources of information, a one-way conversation where some media outlets or publishers say “Here you go”, “This is it.” whereas, with the computer technology the power has shifted to the people and the proliferation of information users and audience generated content. It is now a two-way conversation.
Meanwhile, the new media, which the internet is one, has gone along way in bringing information to ones doorstep.
It is known fact that journalist in Nigerian who want to report adequate information about the widest topical issues will benefit from the service of the internet as source of gathering information and making it possible for journalist to exchange information.
The internet can also help the Nigerian journalist to peak into the daily affairs of the public without physical presence of journalist; it does reduces traveling and hotel accommodation cost and stress.
Therefore, the impact of the information and communication technology (internet) on journalists cannot be over emphasizing for it’s an essential source where journalist gets information at any time.
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