How Newsrooms Use Eyewitness Media
Eyewitnesses capturing footage of news events has a long history. Over the past decade, the invention of the smartphone and the popularity of social networking sites, as a way of sharing videos and photos, has meant that many events, whether that is a protest, the aftermath of a terrorist incident, a weather event, or a human rights abuse will be captured by at least one (often multiple) camera, mostly held by untrained eyewitnesses who happen to be there. This chapter draws on empirical research into the impact of eyewitness media on newsrooms, human rights organizations, and audiences. It explores the barriers that exist around integrating this type of content into newsroom output or as evidence in a human rights case, and it surveys the legal and ethical challenges raised by eyewitness media as well as the impact of graphic imagery on the staff who monitor this content.
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