Lately the topic of trust has come across in a few discussions I have had. My personal notions of trust seem to be different than a number of people. A number of people that I know, anyhow.
I do not consider trust like this card you hand over to others and then revoke when they betray the trust. I look at trust more like a liquid I pour into a cup, and I can pour more into as I decide to or not. In fact, the liquid itself would not be the trust, the act of me pouring would be my definition of trust. Trust is more verb than noun to me in that way. I apply this course of thinking to not only other people, but to the media productions other people produce.
My conceptual framework, as I am developing it, Media Trust, and more pronounced, Black Media Trust, works to encapsulate that in an articulated fashion. The first question for me relating something that exposes vulnerability like trust is why trust at all? Relating that to the media, why trust media productions at all?
So, a lot of this goes back to the early formations of the journalist enterprise. The importance of citizen journalism is so that there can be the public revealing of exploitation of the public trust. The need for Media Trust is, well, distrust. More interesting paradox!
As perceptive sponges of data and energy, we almost have an insatiable hunger for information. In order to know, someone has to take time out of their day to go and get that information. In fact, someone has to be paid to go out and get that information, because that is just how much time it will take them to collect it, and them form it in a reasonably palatable way for multiple audiences. Now, not only does this mean we need to set aside funds for those that go out and collect the information regarding current affairs, but we have to pay the person paying them, the business that pays them, the guy that types all this out, or at least the editor that combs through the rougher drafts of their copy. If we are discussing video journalism, some one has to house the video, someone has to edit the video for diverse viewers, someone has to explain for those diverse viewers exactly what is being shown.
Truth, with or without a pulse, may indeed wish to be free. Unfortunately, Truth’s room and board ain’t so cheap.