Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2011

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

First Advisor

Elizabeth A. Skewes

Second Advisor

Rick Stevens

Third Advisor

Sandra Fish


The purpose of this study is to explore the nature of citizen journalism at a hyper-local level through understanding how and why students use the Resolving Door website, a University of Colorado Boulder School of Journalism and Mass Communication effort which offered a potential citizen journalism platform through a question-and-answer platform. Public sphere, credibility, gatekeeping, gatewatching, and uses and gratifications theories help build the theoretical framework for the evaluation. This study looks at the user's experience through both a quantitative survey and follow-up qualitative interviews among Resolving Door participants. It concludes with why the Resolving Door, in its current state, is not an example of citizen journalism.