BBC wants to do journalism directly from iPhone
Jun 17, 2011
BBC's New Media Department and iPhone App Revolutionize Journalism, Challenging Traditional Media Giants and Embracing Technology's Potential.
It may seem paradoxical, but despite the media often resenting the rapid evolution of technology, this development has transformed the average user into a potential competitor for major press corporations due to their ability to manipulate content with ease. However, the technological evolution is not all doom and gloom for large media corporations. Companies flexible enough to adapt quickly may reap substantial operational benefits, as demonstrated by the BBC.
The British media giant was one of the first major corporations in the UK to establish a New Media department while many global competitors were just starting internet newsrooms. Many large media companies have been hesitant to encourage growth outside of their established departments for fear of losing power, often resorting to hiring interns to produce low-quality news for online reproduction. The BBC, however, managed to buck the trend thanks to its substantial budget.
Now, facing budget cuts due to the conservative Cameronite train wreck, the BBC is grateful for having invested in their New Media department. Their digital coverage has been able to leverage technological benefits to reduce operating costs faster than competitors. With funds under threat, the option to exploit new media is a welcome one.
Their latest innovation is the development of an iPhone app that will allow journalists to report with audio, video, and text directly from the field. While similar apps already exist, the media industry has been reluctant to leave its comfortable position of leadership. As journalist Paulo Markun recently stated, journalists and media companies risk obsolescence if they do not radically reinvent themselves.
The relevance of citizen journalism and its impact on traditional journalism has been a hot topic of discussion but has led to little change. A citizen posting on their blog does not necessarily make them a journalist. However, if that citizen becomes a source of information, opinion, and awareness, even without a formal structure, they can indeed compete with the established press. Here, technology plays a crucial role. Media giants like the BBC, the Guardian, and a few others are actively working to develop new media without commitments to the publications that birthed their current groups. The warning has been given to traditional media for years, but many prefer to deny the inevitable. When the reality hits, it could be too late.