Video Journalism and the Web

By Caroline Bodin

While images have marked and transformed 20th century journalism, video in the 21st century has completely re-shaped the way journalists are reporting and telling stories. We have entered the digital era.

When the 9/11 attacks happened, the images shown were so unthinkable that everybody remembered exactly where they were and what they were doing when they saw the twin towers collapsing. Personally, I was in Guilford in a commercial street wondering what new Hollywood film had managed such realistic special effects until I realised it was live coverage on a news channel. Saddam Hussein’s fall in 2003 and the Asian tsunami in 2004 were covered with the use of videos and ended up almost instantly on TV as well as online, reaching out millions of people at once, in different countries, speaking different languages but sharing a common knowledge : how to read images.

Jay Rosen’s definition of Citizen Journalism:

The Internet has completely revolutionized news coverage, and so has Citizen Journalism. On the technical side of things, broadband arrived like a little miracle for news outlets, already competing with each other for news as instant as possible, but also enabled Mr Smith to get the same access and therefore same distribution to the wider audience. Video equipment has grown cheaper and lighter and new technology has emerged, to a point where the average citizen can record and share any event with the world within a matter of minutes.

In International News Reporting, edited by John Owen and Heather Purdey, Nigel Baker wrote the chapter ‘Technology, Timeless and Taste : The Battlefronts for the 21st News Agency’. He states that some research lead “for AP by PQ Media shows that the global market for editorial ‘outsourced content’ – text, video photos and graphics – sold by agencies and syndicators is set to rise from $5.6 billion in 2006 to $7.8 billion in 2011”. And that video is “the first ‘outsourced content’ used for editorial content”. Figures are expected to rise from $3, 533 billion in 2006 to $4, 539 billion in 2011.

Today, Online Video Journalism includes any of these: interviews, footage of news events, video reports, newscasts, webdocumentaries, video clips, video blogging or vlog, live television – with online live streaming or live broadcast – YouTube channels, trailers or even advertorials.

So when you look at the term Online Video Journalism, what exactly does it mean? What does it include? How much does it represents in the news economy? Who produces it and how is it being done? And is the future of Journalism lying in the growth of Video Online Journalism?

In this blog, we’ll try to explore the ways and means in which Online Video Journalism has taken one of the most important place in news coverage today.

Winners of the Online Journalism Awards 2010 in the Online Video Journalism categories:

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