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CNN Debuts Citizen Media News May 20, 2007

Posted by Joanne KY Teoh in Convergence, Journalism, News, Web Video.
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CNN this weekend premieres “News To Me,” a program built on user-generated video, on its Headline News. The BBC is among other networks with similar programs.

News To Me debuts on Headline News on Saturday, May 19, at 12:30 p.m and will air weekends. The program is hosted by actor/producer Eric Lanford, recipient of 12 Southeast Emmy awards. It showcases the most compelling videos, pictures and stories traversing the Internet.

User-generated content enables us to integrate our audience into the newsgathering process. Everyday, Web users are bombarded with viral video and photographs, including countless clips of user- generated content— but most go unviewed due to the sheer volume of material. In a half-hour program each week, News To Me highlights the best that citizen journalism has to offer.

Ken Jautz, EVP, CNN Worldwide.

The show will use CNN.com’s I-Reports as a vehicle for some of its content. Lanford updates viewers on current events through the eyes – and lenses – of citizen journalists. He also interviews people who have submitted CNN I-Reports, content captured by viewers with personal cell phones, cameras or other devices.

Viewers can submit material through a “Send Your I-Report” link at CNN.com or by e-mail at ireport@cnn.com. Submitted I-Report material undergoes a vetting process CNN employs for its content.

CNN’s move follows BBC News 24 in December 2006 when the British broadcaster launched “Your News,” a TV program based entirely on user-generated content.

The program draws on the 10,000 emails the BBC News website gets from the public each day with story suggestions, comments and pictures from the public. The BBC program includes:

Your Story – weekly news report covering an issue raised by a member of the public.
Your Questions – A reporter investigates answers to questions sent in by the public on issues.
Your Pictures – images sent into the BBC from the public with their view of the world.
Your Top Stories – that week’s top stories on the BBC News website and elsewhere.

Your News will make use of the huge range of material being sent in to the BBC by the public, some of which has already provided real newsgathering value. It will reflect the stories catching our audience’s eye and talk to them directly about the issues they feel really matter.

Kevin Bakhurst, Controller of BBC News 24

NBC11.com (site of Bay Area NBC affiliate KNTV) has a user-generated video section called “Moving Pictures.” Editors are trying a hybrid model as a way to test user-generated coverage.

For the project’s premier, editors gave digital still cameras to a dozen viewers, including an injured Iraqi war veteran and a gravedigger. Editors and reporters at the station reviewed the photos, then returned to interview the subjects and tell a “Moving Pictures” story based on the still images.

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