by Mike Masnick

Participatory Journalism In Action

from the recording-the-news dept

There's been plenty of talk about "citizen journalism" and how things like cameraphones would help turn the average person on the street into a photojournalist. It appears that's happening extremely quickly (so much for those who said cameraphones would never be useful). After the London bombings this past summer, apparently the BBC received about 1,000 images from the public. After this weekend's oil depot explosion, they received well over 6,000. Obviously, there may be other factors involved -- but it is still interesting to note just how many people appear to be snapping photos and sending them in to news organizations. Of course, now the cameraphone curmudgeons will start complaining that people are standing around taking photos instead of helping when emergencies occur. In the meantime, for news organizations struggling to figure out how to embrace this internet thing (it's catching on, apparently), this is yet more evidence that people want to be a part of the story by helping to spread the news, not just consume it.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    The Other Mike, Dec 12th, 2005 @ 2:12pm

    No Subject Given


    The first question that comes to mind is how many different people sent pictures and how many sent multiple (and what is the average number) pictures though. I have a hard time believing that 6000 people (or anything near that) had pictures of a single spontaneous event they thought were news worthy.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    MissingFrame, Dec 12th, 2005 @ 3:14pm

    Re: No Subject Given

    Well my phone only holds 600 images so I'm guessing more than 10 people?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Luke, Dec 12th, 2005 @ 7:24pm

    Re: No Subject Given

    I think the reason their was 6000 photos was that people took pictures of everything that could be related to the event. Not just the explosion itself but possibly the area around it, people's reactions, etc. Just looking at the BBC website, there are a few pictures of trucks lining up to combat the fire.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    giafly, Dec 13th, 2005 @ 1:44am

    Over 10 million people saw it

    The smoke plume lasted two days, covered hundreds of square miles, and was easily visible from Central London - view from Docklands (bbc).
    I think a major reason for the number of pictures is that so many people have seen this.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Old Grouch, Dec 13th, 2005 @ 10:10am

    Flickr photostream has over 700 images

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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