A recent article by Mary Grace Antony and Ryan J. Thomas presents the critical thematic analysis of comments on YouTube videos about the Oscar Grant shooting incident. (I’m even more at a loss of words now than usually, after having just watched some of these; kissing every pretense of objectivity goodye, this is horribly sad stuff.)
But back to the article. It describes an interesting and important example of citizen journalism; but honestly I found the link between the particular analysis and the conclusion reached somewhat ill conceived, if not non-existent. There surely are interpretations of what the public sphere is that are already known to be outdated and simplistic. Proving once more that these interpretations are outdated and simplistic seems a bit like a superfluous task to me. Especially when done in a manner not really convincing.
Mary Grace Antony and Ryan J. Thomas (2010): “‘This is citizen journalism at its finest’: YouTube and the public sphere in the Oscar Grant shooting incident,” in: New Media and Society 12(8), 1280 – 1296.