Monday 2 June 2008

PM talking to blogging 7/7 survivor

The PM programme on BBC Radio 4 is promising to talk to Rachel North this evening - any time now, in fact. Rachel was on the Piccadilly line train that was caught up in the terrorist attacks on London in July 2005.

She began a blog (still going strong) which described how she came to terms with the events of that day. It ended up on the BBC website. She later added her voice to calls for a public inquiry.

On PM, she'll be talking about a new study that says it might be better not to share your feelings after being subjected to major trauma. It'll be interesting to see what she has to say. After all, she ended up sharing her thoughts with thousands of people, first in blog form and then in the pages of her book, Out of the Tunnel.

I'll update this post in due course.

UPDATE 6.55pm

Generally, Rachel agreed that the findings made sense. She believed that it was usually better for people to deal with trauma in their own way and shouldn't be forced to relive the experiences if they didn't want to.

She did briefly talk about her blog, noting that it enabled other survivors to get in contact and form a community that could help one another, but it wasn't something presenter Eddie Mair pursued.

For me, I think the way Rachel North was treated as a source of information is interesting. She has made the transition from being an eyewitness, or a 'blogger', to being an expert source that journalists regularly call on. Her opinions are treated as reliable, trustworthy and accurate.

This is not unwarranted as Rachel has clearly become very knowledgeable in this area, but it's evidence of how far the relationship between bloggers and the mainstream media has come in the last decade.

And I would suggest that more and more bloggers, like Rachel, are being used, and will be used as sources of information, providing their expertise on the news, in the future.


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