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Wireless changes the rules of video journalism – even in the face of horrific events
April 20, 2007
4:45 PM -- I am getting pretty damn tired of being horrified by the actions of disturbed individuals with guns. But I will continue to be horrified because that is the only logical reaction to horror. I could digress here and comment on gun control, crime, and, most importantly, why so many individuals seem to be disturbed these days. If you want to talk about any of these, just let me know.
But I couldn’t help but notice that, during the horror, CNN (which, like a lot of business people, I keep on in the office all day, just in case) was running a video taken by a student using a cellphone. The name Jamal Albarghouti, that of the student and accidental video journalist, was mentioned more than any other, or so it seemed, on Monday. In fact, CNN has a site dedicated to journalism of this form, with all manner of photos and videos contributed.
While I hope we never see such carnage contributed by cellphone or any other vehicle ever again, it is safe to conclude that wireless in the hands of everyday people is going to play a huge role in how we receive coverage of major breaking news stories in the future. Amateurs and just someone in the right (or wrong) place at the right (or wrong) time will bring us the story, albeit raw and unedited -- and maybe that’s a good thing. This is really not that different from, say, the Zapruder film that captured the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963, but with an immediacy that is, after all, the essence of wireless.
— Craig Mathias is Principal Analyst at the Farpoint Group , an advisory firm specializing in wireless communications and mobile computing. Special to Unstrung
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