I am an avid user and producer of the new media, but I recognize the way the new media lives as off the mainstream media is more parasitic than a symbiotic. Most of the reliable information gathering is still done by professionals and paid staff of traditional media. The new media repackages and reprocess it. If we only have new media, we will have only opinions & personal points of view.
An excellent point. In the book, Anderson celebrates the birth of the new journalist in no uncertain terms -- that person who runs their own website, or blog, or participates in discussion forums or posts comments underneath news articles at web sites. The problem is that the vast majority of people doing this navel-gazing across the internet, and across the world, in these connected times, are simply commenting on ACTUAL, LEGITIMATE JOURNALISM that still needs to be performed by professionals. Opinions and points of view, as you suggest, are all the "new media" are about. Thankfully, the newspapers and magazines that are being squeezed by the new media and it's "everyone's-a-pundit" ethos are still paying experienced, educated reporters to conduct legtimate research and conduct proper interviews to compile stories (and there is an art to it, people -- just because you have a computer doesn't mean you know how to write news). It can easily be argued that many newspapers and mags lean left or right or whatever, but the fact remains they have STANDARDS of reportage that bloggers and forum posters do not have to live by, which makes the latter far less trustworthy in terms of technical craft and, as often as not, content. I worry, however, that the latter may one day usurp the former, and when there are no more legitimate reporters, EVERYONE will just be commenting and arguing about stuff OTHER people make up without conducting verifiable research or interviews.