Smartphones key to real-time reporting

The growing importance of smartphones in breaking news coverage has again been underlined, this time by a finalist in the 2010 Online News Association awards.

The Seattle Times has already won a Pulitzer Prize for its coverage of a coffee shop shooting in which four police officers were killed.

Mobile played a major part in its reports on the hunt for a gunman who roamed the Tacoma area for 40 hours before he too was shot dead.

Lead producer Tiffany Campbell told Poynter Online “We made use of video apps like Ustream, Qik and Twitvid to stream live video.

“Whether it was 2am police press briefings or the neighbourhood scene after the suspect was shot and killed, we were able to go live at a moment’s notice.”

She said the paper was focused on smartphones as a primary production platform for live events, particularly when streaming video or social media updates were called for.

Campbell has an excellent presentation on the advance of mobile as a journalism tool: Smartphones = mobile, real-time news production


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