Sunday, April 29, 2007

ABC News redesign adds more video, user comments, and citizen journalism

ABC News is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its website this May by launching a new site design. The site design is a bit cleaner, and has some nice features like icons next to each headline to easily let you know if there are photos, videos, visitor polls, or just text.

The site also makes heavy use of user comments, and provides opportunities for readers to upload videos from cellphones and video cameras. In some situations, that video could be featured prominently on the site or make its way onto a television broadcast. No word on whether the network will be compensating those whose material is used for broadcast.

While it's good to see news organizations reach out to their audience in an effort to help tell the stories, there's a difference between being a news source and being a news producer. If someone calls the local newspaper or ABC news with a tip and the news outlet then follows up by reporting the story, that's one thing. But as networks like CNN find themselves relying upon citizens who were on the scene with a cellphone camera when news broke, those citizen reporters should be compensated.

[via Micro Persuasion]

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