Today the venerable site that helps you keep on all new developments in emerging media – Mashable – reported that the BBC was developing an iPhone App for live broadcasting by its journalists. That, I thought, was interesting. But also contained in the text of the article was – news to me – the fact that CBS and CNN both have apps available called EyeMobile and iReport, respectively, that allow for anyone like you or me to submit multimedia material to them that could be included in their broadcasts. That, to me, was neat and shocking all at once, and yet of course, made perfect sense.
Blogs created the means for citizen journalists and hence, I and others write about a lot of content – often niche content aimed at specific audiences with an interest in the topic (like Eye on FDA). Podcasting allowed me to record audio and post it. And YouTube created the means for us to record some thoughts or events and put them up on a channel for others to come and see, and you can even use your blog or twitter feed to drive traffic to the channel (thought it is amazing how many people don’t do that). But all of that content is material that I can generate and then hope you come to read, hear or view it.
Cameras for both stills and video have allowed citizen journalists to record and send things out for others to pick up and broadcast, as we have seen with the many protests and mass events occurring in so many countries right now where there are not journalists available. And software exists that allows “live-blogging” so that, for example, I could report to you live from an FDA Advisory Committee meeting or a Congressional hearing. But that, too, would rely on you coming to my site to see it.
But the BBC app opens up a new possible world. According to the Mashable article reporters will have the ability to report live from their iPhone App.
All that means that one day, I might be able to report to you live from a Congressional hearing, or any other place I might be at. I can be a reporter wherever my phone is, not just a reporter who writes or creates videos for my site for you to come and see, but live broadcasts others may want to pick up and use. That has some big ramifications for those who report and produce the news and for those professionals who work with them. And as these developments create vast new opportunities and changed dynamics, look next for search tools to progress forward so that, amongst all this incredible material, we can find what it is we are looking for.
The world of communications has changed a little – again. And yet each little change creates huge new possibilities.