No Easy Day Book by Mark Owen and Kevin Maurer

The book by Mark Owen with Kevin Maurer has a full title of No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama bin Laden. It is a military memoir written by a former soldier in the SEAL Team Six, a counter-terrorism and special mission unit which was behind the mission that got Osama bin Laden killed. The book chronicles Owen's career as a member of DEVGRU, combat missions he participated in and of course his involvement with the mission that killed bin Laden.

Twitter, Osama Bin Laden and Citizen Journalism

The first scoop with regards to the death of Osama Bin Laden, the world's most notorious terrorist, didn't come from the major news organizations. It came from a man named Keith Urbahn, once a chief of staff for former US defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld. He posted the following tweet on Twitter, a social networking/microblogging site:

"So I'm told by a reputable person they have killed Osama Bin Laden. Hot damn."

When the news broke out that Osama Bin Laden is dead, citizen journalism went on a full swing. Millions are tweeting about it on Twitter. Everyone on Facebook were almost obligated to post their opinions on the issue. Millions more of bloggers wrote blog posts citing Terrorist Number One's death.

The fact that the news about Bin Laden's death first came from an ordinary citizen says a lot about the growing power and credibility of citizen journalism. It's true that social media and networking sites are often the sources of misleading and false news like a celebrity dying in a skiing accident in Switzerland or a politician being assassinated somewhere in a foreign country. These, however, does not take away social media's major role in the widespread distribution of news, propagation of ideas, firing up of revolutions and serving as the voice for the bold, the downtrodden and the lost.

Citizen journalism has nowhere to go but up. The power of Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and friends only started showing during the last few years. We are talking about years here but it's only the beginning of what to come. Majority of today's older populations don't know yet how to navigate the world wide web let alone how to operate a computer. As years go on, there will come a time when everyone will be internet-savvy. Politicians, movie actors, musicians, businessmen, ordinary consumers, students, cops, prisoners, soldiers, terrorists. EVERYONE. Everyone will be tweeting, posting videos on YouTube, ranting in online chat rooms, publishing blogs, sending emails to virtually anyone, etc.

People are very active online today but we are seeing just a speck of the scenario we'll see in upcoming years. The divide between an article written by a New York Times journalist and a blog post published by an anonymous writer will continue to blur and will eventually disappear. The two will become one.

It's still too early to try to predict what the media world will look like once the above happen. Will it be media chaos or will it be media heaven? Only time will tell. As for now, let's be thankful that we were the generation who got to see the unabated rise of social media.

Osama Bin Laden Raid: 'No Easy Day' Gives Details

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