New Platform for Citizen Journalists Emerges

A new website developed by creators Jake Counsell and Claire Wagner is dedicated to empowering and nurturing citizen journalists. In fact, citizen journalists are what inspired the duo to create the site Criticl.

Counsell and Wagner’s mission is to establish a site where anyone can create an account free of charge, write and produce meaningful content, and through the help of the community, increase readership.

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Counsell said he was frustrated with sites like Medium because they are so isolated and if you don’t have a following on Twitter, it’s hard to build one on Medium. He argued that a lot of great content is sadly going under the radar due to this.

Criticl is challenging blogging outlets like the Medium by making their site user-friendly and letting users write about anything they want. There is an up-vote down-vote option where users have the privilege of being the editor-in-chief. Stories that generate a lot of comments and views will end up on the front page.

Since its launch in 2014, Criticl has gained more than 4,000 registered users, with most users finding the site via Twitter promotion or through word-of-mouth. Currently, there is no revenue sharing, but they hope to eventually compensate some of their most popular writers who produce thoughtful content.

All in all, the site hopes that this will encourage others to become citizen journalists and be a reliable news source for readers to turn to. So what do you guys think about this website? Would you use it or find it worthwhile? Or will this fail in terms of competing against other sites, such as CNN’s iReport and PBS’s Mediashift? Share your thoughts!

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