The way in which people interact in society as well as their self-image is changing due to the emergence of the internet, the leading medium of our times. Developed languages led to tribal society, writing led to ancient high culture and then printing of books and literature took us into modern society. Social scientists historically divide human history by media epochs.
The internet has taken us into a new era in media. The internet has facilitated widespread, global connection of people, organizations, machines and even common objects. Computers are central to communication, leveraging the internet. We have computers being used transmit information and in some instances the computers themselves are participating in communication. Our modern infrastructure for network media revolves around the internet. Today the internet is the leading network for society to engage with media.
The result of this is that network media is a highly complex, non-linear system. It is unknown when, where and which topics or individuals will appear in the media. There is no established way to assess the content of the information, the validity or the effects resulting in new social movements. Disorder reigns in the era of this network society: it can be seen through the economic upheavals, political chaos, and even daily society.
We cannot accurately project where this will lead us. It is for this reason we, at Tapwriter, are determined to have a positive impact on this societal transformation. Our approach is to execute on a vision for the future of journalism as it pertains to this state of network media that exists today. We believe one thing to be certain: This societal network truly needs a public arena for journalistic reflection and evaluation.
The vision for the future of journalism is ambitious and will take time to come to fruition. We believe that together we can tackle this project and recruit other like-minded people. The nine guiding principles will light the way forward and keep us grounded.
1. We are striving to evolve journalism
Journalism, as it exists today, no longer does justice to the complexity of the network society. That's why we need a new kind of journalism with self-observation and critical self-reflection. With tapwriter we are creating a place where we can work with you and other committed people on the journalism of tomorrow.
2. We foster engaging communities
Mass media are mere distribution media. A direct exchange between journalists and the public is not possible. With tapwriter we network journalists with users and enable an exchange at eye level. Only in this way, can communities emerge from informed citizens who, based on facts and constructive discussions, reduce the polarisation of society and promote mutual understanding.
3. We challenge traditional journalistic roles
Everyone can publish, share their experiences and knowledge about the world. Therefore, there will be more, not fewer, journalists in the future. At tapwriter we want to discuss the following questions: Who are the journalists of the network society? What expectations do we have of them? What standards should they adhere to?
4. We encourage new forms of co-creation
In the struggle for attention, mass media are increasingly oriented towards popular topics, click-throughs, and ratings. Ironically, they are moving away from the questions that matter to people. At tapwriter, we want to make new forms of direct participation possible, so that journalists can work together with the community.
5. We facilitate diverse perspectives existing in harmony
Mass media, search engines, and social media: they always show only a limited view of the world. With tapwriter, we connect journalists from all over the world with self-organizing, topic-oriented communities. We do this with the intention of illuminating the course of things in one place from many perspectives without any socio-political unification compulsion.
6. We explore new ways of storytelling
Network media break with linear-hierarchical text structures. They decontextualize images. They allow participation in events somewhere in the world by virtual realities. And they involve people and organizations in new ways to discuss them. These changes affect people and society - including journalism. We see tapwriter as a laboratory in which we reflect on these developments together with journalists and users and thus gradually develop new forms and formats.
7. We are committed to self-determination
The network society is also a society that wants to control. The users are observed, measured, tracked, manipulated - always, and everywhere. At tapwriter, the self-determination of the community is the greatest asset. Technology serves the community - not the other way around. No user data for commercial or political interests are given to third parties. Users determine what may happen to their data. Users, not algorithms, determine what information they get to see.
8. We believe in independent, no strings attached journalism
Journalism is becoming increasingly difficult to finance. The advertising-based publishing model seems to have had its day. At the same time, new marketplaces are emerging on digital platforms. With tapwriter, we are organizing an advertising-free community marketplace for a new kind of independent journalism. Journalists can present their work on tapwriter and get supported for it.
9. We value dialog and growth
The future of tapwriter depends on whether we succeed in inspiring the community, entering into a dialogue with it, observing, asking questions, learning, and consistently implementing what we have learned. That's precisely what we at tapwriter want to do from the very beginning. We want to listen and learn. Together with you, we want to find out what tomorrow's journalism might look like. And we want to create a platform with you, which forms new confidence for a new society.