Lindsay Campbell is not a journalist, or at least she claims she isn't. The former host of Wall Strip and the current host and producer for MobLogic (a new web series produced by CBS Interactive) wasted no time before disclosing this perspective to her audience. On March 7, in the first official episode, she describe how she she's her role in the media.
Now let me say right from the start: I'm not a journalist. I'm coming at this like you. I read the news; I read blogs, and I want to talk about the things that are going on around me in the world. You do too, and we want to hear from you. Your ideas, your opinions, that's the point of the show. We take a story we find interesting and we go out and talk to people about it. Where better to start than right where we live? Look we're not trying to hide it, this show's coming from CBS.At the time, I thought it was a strange approach, but wanted to see where the show was headed before weighing in. Since then, I've found myself tuning into MobLogic on an almost daily basis and have found the show's journalism to be exemplary on at least two occasions. The second episode of MobLogic was titled, How the Dems Screwed Florida, and provided an in-depth look at the mechanics of the Florida Primary fiasco that I hadn't encountered in any other media outlet. Two weeks later the show profiled the case of an Al Jazeera cameraman who has been held in Guantanamo for more than six years. The story provided an insight into a journalist's legal trouble that has received little media attention, but also explored how New Yorker's feel about the matter. This is journalism, and while it may not rise to investigative muckraking, I doubt many people would argue otherwise. And if, MobLogic is journalism, which I think it is, then does that make Lindsay Campbell a journalist? She says no, but at the time of this posting neither Campbell nor any representative for MobLogic had responded to my inquiry. Perhaps the reason Campbell is "not a journalist," has nothing to do with her work at all. MobLogic is produced by CBS Interactive, not by CBS news. According to wikipedia, "CBS Interactive is the division of the CBS Corporation which has responsibility for programming and ad sales for CBS.com, CBS SportsLine.com, CBSNews.com, and CWTV.com." It's possible that "journalism" is outside of the division's mandate, and that is why Campbell is not a "journalist." This is only a theory of course, and I will update this blog if I am able to get an explanation from Lindsay Campbell herself or someone else at MobLogic, but I can only speculate until then. There is no hard and fast definition of what makes a journalist, and it's unlikely there will ever be a universal consensus, but this new question adds an interesting twist: Is Lindsay Cambell a journalist, even is she doesn't want to be?