It could become a reality. According to Fox News (not my usual source *shudder*) Michigan is considering a law that all journalists would have to be licensed.
Read through it. There are some good and bad points.
Good, it could stop the spread of crap “news” outlets on the internet spreading flat out bad information. People who have no journalistic integrity who will print anything just to get read. Shut them down.
Bad, they want to require awards and 3 years of experience. How would you get the first 3 if you’re not allowed to work? Michigan is off limits to beginners? You’d shut down all your small markets right there. And awards? Awards are for fools and lapdogs who need someone else’s approval. I do my best every day because its what I expect of myself. Not because I think some jerkoff will give me an award. Whoever the hell he/she is, they’ve probably seen and done less than I have in this business but think much more highly of themselves. I don’t need their approval.
Oh, and to the fools who say it will kill freedom of the press, you’re short-sighted idiots. It would result in more freedom. Because the journalists who pass would be trusted, and could share what they’ve done without fear of people thinking you just had an axe to grind or you’re muckraking for the tabloids. Once you’re trusted as a professional, you are free to do your job.
Anyway, like I said, read over it, make your own judgements. I for one think its something we need, though not in this form. And the licensing body should be made up of practicing journalists. Not politicians or jackass professors who have never set foot outside academia. It could do a lot of good.