Big boost for citizen photo-journalism
Yahoo and Reuters have jointly launched a new effort to consolidate citizen photo-journalism efforts. Starting tuesday, people can upload photographs taken from their cellphones or digital cameras onto a section called you witness news on Yahoo news.
These photos will be put up on Yahoo news and Reuters sites and will be available to editors at Yahoo News and Reuters, who will use the photographs in relevant articles. The best part is that people whose photos or videos are selected for distribution to Reuters' clients will be paid!
The best part is that this part of a broader initiative by Reuters. According to the New York Times,
The arrangement with Yahoo is one of several initiatives by Reuters to use the
Internet to bring new sources to its news report. It has invested $7 million in
Pluck, a company that distributes content from blogs to newspapers and other
traditional media outlets. It has also backed two more experimental ventures: NewAssignment.net, an effort to foster reporting that combines the work of professional journalists with input from online readers, and Global Voices, a collection of blogs from less-developed countries.
It would be very interesting to see how well this initiative will perform. Articles announcing this news have listed a number of reasons why this could potentially fail. One of them ofcourse, is that this will not give the user the instant gratification they can get by putting their videos or photos on websites such as youtube.
But maybe people will still participate enthusiastically because being carried alongside a Reuters article is definitely more prestigious than being seen on youtube. Besides, they can make money too!