An interesting theme in this course has been related to who governs online spaces. Thus far, it has been a case in which corporations rule for the most part. However, corporations need to satisfy the wants and needs of individuals in order for their business models to thrive. Lawrence Lessig talks about this give-and-take in his theory of the hybrid economy. In this economy, user-generated content brings together the user as a producer and the corporation as a platform provider. The user needs the corporation for the platform and the corporation needs the user for the content.
With online citizen journalism, we see the emergence of for-profit business models as platforms for news delivery, just as we saw with broadcast journalism. However, broadcast journalism operates on a traditional business model in which employees produce content for the corporation. With online citizen journalism the journalists are users of the site, not employees. Therefore, it is in the sites best interest to keep the users, aka citizen journalists, happy.
I think that this is the key to avoiding the concentration of ownership of for-profit citizen journalism in the hands of a few. Under the model of the hybrid economy, users hold more power. As long as users act on their agency in this system, they can have an influence on what the future has in store.