What’s the Shorthand for ‘Video’?

By Ross Cullen

Trainee journalists are constantly reminded of the need to bridge the different media and be cross-platform reporters. But what of those who have already broken into the industry? How do they adapt?

Budding hacks are well aware of the importance of starting their career with established blogs, Twitter accounts and audio and visual editing skills, as well as the ability to write for online and printed media. They are not alone; the reporters ahead of them on the career path have also recognised that they have to change with the times. How are they doing it?

Staff at the Reading Post, in Berkshire, have turned their hands to online video journalism. Long gone are the days when a newspaper journalist only had to be a fast shorthander; now there is a need for video skills. The paper’s decision to launch a daily online video news bulletin illustrates a few different things:

1) An awareness that newsprint readership is diminishing and/or moving to the online versions of the publications. The editors need to hang onto their readers and interactivity is a great way of doing so.

2) The public love video. Citizen journalism is on the rise and, as previously discussed on this blog, broadcast media have already built whole pages on their online presences dedicated to video. Newspapers have to follow suit.

3) Time is of the essence. People are in a rush. Understanding that they might not have hours to sit down and read the paper cover-to-cover, the editors can still hold onto loyal readers as they visit the Post’s homepage by offering them quick, direct news in a free, 60-second video.

The Post uploads their daily video at lunchtime, giving online readers updated news during their midday breaks. As the media world changes around them, reporters need to be ahead of the game (and their competitors) in order to remain relevant and exciting. For a newspaper, enlisting the help of video on their webpages is a relatively easy and effective way of expanding their reach.

The margins of the different media are blurring. Local news services have to elbow and barge their way to the front of the public’s minds to continue to be noticed. The major TV channels tapped into video long ago. Online streaming is now clearly not solely the preserve of broadcasters.

Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NvPtzG-6Bzg&feature=player_embedded#

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Setting Up Citizen Journalism

By Alex Dibble

Your role and mine in shaping the world of online media

Since a camera was first added to a mobile phone, citizen journalism has come alive. A story without an image is much less of a story (at least in the eyes of online media organisations) than a story accompanied by visuals.

And so with a mobile, Joe Bloggs suddenly had the potential to generate online news content.

Stephen Jio is the eBusiness Programme Manager at Dell, and says that “no discussion about citizen journalism can happen without talking about the photo taken by Janis Krums on the 15th January 2009.”

On that date a US Airways airliner crash-landed in the Hudson, with all passengers and crew surviving. Krums happened to be crossing the river on a ferry, and took this photo.

The image has come to all but represent the new media phenomenon. If you search ‘citizen journalism’ on Google images, it’s right at the top.

Within 24 hours it had been viewed more than 40,000 times. More importantly, it was used by news media around the world. It couldn’t have been a better shot.

While that’s a fantastic photo, we’re here to uncover the role of video in online journalism.

Smart-phones have made citizen journalism incredibly easy from a video point of view: get your phone out, record something and upload it. All in a matter of minutes.

The value of this user generated video content will be the subject of future posts.