May 05, 2003
NYTimes: Online Newspaper Shakes Up Korean Politics
Although the staff has grown to 41, from the beginning the electronic newspaper's unusual concept has been to rely mostly on contributions from ordinary readers all over the country, who send dispatches about everything from local happenings and personal musings to national politics.
Only 20 percent of the paper each day is written by staff journalists. So far, a computer check shows, there have been more than 10,000 other bylines.
The newspaper deals with questions of objectivity and accuracy by grading articles according to their content. Those that are presented as straight news are fact-checked by editors. Writers are paid small amounts, which vary according to how the stories are ranked, using forestry terminology, from "kindling" to "rare species."
"My goal was to say farewell to 20th-century Korean journalism, with the concept that every citizen is a reporter," said Mr. Oh, a wiry, intense man whose mobile phone never stops ringing — and who insists his name has no connection with the newspaper's.