Twitter journalism

Via Charles Crawford comes this interesting infographic thingummy about the rise of iPhone journalism from frugaldad.com

Infographic about mobile phone photojournalism

While I think Mr Crawford is over-egging it a bit to say all this means “goodbye photo-journalism” – really outstanding photo-journalism requires much the same high level of technical skill, a “good eye” and luck as it has always done, whereas iPhone journalism really requires minimal skill and maximum good luck in being in the right place at the right time – I think Frugaldad’s comment that the huge strides being made in smartphone technology, combined with their interconnectivity with social media websites such Facebook and Twitter, make such phones a formidable weapon in the journalist’s arsenal.

But a word of warning: as Riyaard Minty of Al-Jazeera comments, the citizen photo postings of the uprisings in Libya, Tunisia, Egypt and now Syria are “the primary lens” through which these events have been brought to the world’s attention – “primary”, as in “first”, not (as some befuddled editors of national newspapers and 24-hours news channels seem to think) the “only” lens.

Because just as a bunch of random tweets and Facebook messages thrown together do not a news story make, a bunch of iPhone photos from the scene of an ongoing news event, while immediately gripping, do not necessarily tell the whole story. Context is everything, and it requires a skilled journalist to pull together all the disparate, if related, elements together into something like a coherent whole.

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