WSJ on citizen journalism

Wall Street Journal had a story yesterday (on July 13) (Thanks to Rajesh Jain for pointing it to me) in their print version and that story is available here (paid subscription required) that described how citizen journalism played a role in the recent bombing disaster in Mumbai. Yesterday I also talked briefly about it and how event-based perspective adopted in SEraja may facilitate citizen journalism. We will discuss role of events and News in more depth soon. Here some interesting quotes from WSJ article are very effective in showing how citizen journalism is effective in such situations.

In fact, during the floods of 2005, Star News also asked viewers with video-camera cellphones to send in footage of the flooding. That became so popular that the channel eventually put together a half-hour broadcast show based on the videos. Shortly after this week’s bombings, he said, his channel received some “pretty newsy” video clips filmed with people’s cellphones. Some of the clips captured the first few seconds after an explosion.

This week, NDTV posted online cameraphone videos like these sent in by viewers at www.ndtv.com (click on the “send an mms” link to see them). One such video appears to dramatically capture the first few moments after one of the bombings. In the shaky, graphic clip, someone can be heard to be screaming as the camera pans across injured passengers. Near the end of the short clip, someone tries to lift a victim who appears to be unconscious. The footage also shows the scrolling on-screen ticker containing viewer messages.

Emerging technology may bring interesting approaches to help people during the time of disaster.

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