Articles about "Video"


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Tips for Storytellers: Get your video right

If you never trained for video, here are a few basic tips from Regina McCombs, senior editor for visual news at Minnesota Public Radio and Poynter adjunct faculty.

Part of a series of graphics with tips for storytellers, this infographic can be thought of as bite-sized inspiration.

Last Monday: How to make the most of your tweets Next Friday: Tips for polishing your writing, with Roy Peter Clark and others
Poynter Quinn-fo-graphics: Get your video right

For a PDF: Poynter Quinn-fo-graphics: Get your video right

Related training: Effective News Videos with Videolicious: A Digital Tools Tutorial, Oct. 30 | Key Elements to Compelling Video Storytelling, on-demand Webinar replay Read more

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Third of millennials watch mostly online video or no broadcast TV

Thirty-four percent of millennials surveyed watch mostly online video or no broadcast television, new research from The New York Times says.

Brian Brett, the Times’ executive director of customer research, is scheduled to present the research at the INMA Audience Summit in Las Vegas Thursday. Read more

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Test tubes with colorful liquids on dark grey background

New York Times launches weekly video series to highlight new findings in scientific research

A thresher shark’s tail attack is like a “ballet move.” A cheetah changes direction like a wide receiver. Myxococcus xanthus bacteria have a “kind of stealth communication system” that may help them plan their signature wavelike attacks.

Those are some of the ways New York Times science writer James Gorman discusses scientific research in the Times’ weekly “Science Take” videos, which debut today. The clips are 60-90-second-long discussions of an idea that’s popped out of research Gorman and the science section’s Jeffery DelViscio have read.

The journalists look for research with “one point that can be summarized,” Gorman said by phone. A lot of scientific research now has video attached, making it easier for the Times to illustrate sometimes-lofty concepts.

That’s not actually too far from a way to approach blogging, I ventured to science editor Barbara Strauch in a separate call. “Yes and no,” she said. “Because blogging is sometimes blither and this is the opposite, we hope, of blither.”

A lot of legwork goes into avoiding blither. After reading research, DelViscio will usually call scientists, then write something up for Gorman, who will often call the scientists himself. Then they put together an outline script that Gorman will play with when filming — emphasizing different words, changing constructions that would work perfectly well in written journalism. It sounds funny to say “Darwin long thought about sexual selection” out loud, for instance, Gorman said. Read more

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2013 Cover

University of Oregon students embrace iPad-only publication, challenge traditional storytelling methods

Nathan Wallner is punching me in the face.

Again and again, the mixed martial arts fighter jukes, jives and aims jabs directly at my jawbone. Or so it seems, thanks to an eye-opening, interactive reading experience courtesy of OR Magazine.

Conceived and assembled each spring by upperclassmen at the University of Oregon’s School of Journalism and Communication, OR is the first and most prominent student publication produced exclusively for the iPad. It’s also one of the most innovative student-media and journalism-education initiatives in the U.S., an effort that seeks to “challenge the traditional approach to classroom instruction” and pioneer new methods of content production.

Or, as a student staffer on the magazine put it last year, “I really feel like I’m working for The Daily Prophet from Harry Potter.”

The Wild West of a learning curve

The reader’s journey with OR doesn’t begin in a cupboard under the stairs but in the iTunes store on the iPad. A little patience is required – depending on your connection, downloading an issue can take about 20 minutes. And navigation is an interactive adventure in its own right, involving horizontal and vertical scrolling, occasional rotating, tapping at various speeds and levels of intensity, and uncovering the multimedia extras waiting to be digested.

As I discovered, those extras can pack a punch.

For example, the video of the MMA’s Wallner delivering digital blows at the screen is a teaser for a profile focused on “the interiority of the fighter’s mind, what it feels like to step into the cage and get beaten up or beat somebody up in front of a lot of people.”

The multimedia package, titled “How to Be a Badass,” includes video, a photo slideshow, and a write-up about how Wallner balances a brutal MMA training regimen with university classes and work as a bouncer. At one point, an image of Wallner in mid-punch is meshed seamlessly with time-lapse video of his own shadow sparring against a wall. While he remains still in the foreground, his shadow can be scrolled into action, fighting on, a metaphor for how omnipresent MMA is in his life.

The main feature by Ben Kendall concludes with a glimpse inside the sport’s famed cage, recounting a bout pitting Wallner against a hometown favorite. To win the fight, Wallner unleashes a “flurry of left-right combinations,” a left hook, and a chokehold known as the guillotine. He earns a championship medal and belt, while losing a filling. As Wallner puts it, “The whole experience is kind of a rollercoaster in your mind.”

Which isn’t a bad description of how OR came to be.

Soon after Apple’s Steve Jobs unveiled the iPad in late January 2010, Ed Madison jump-started a course on the tablet’s emerging technology.

Ed Madison

At the time, Madison, a veteran journalist and a founding producer of CNN, was a UO journalism teaching fellow and doctoral candidate. He put together the 400-level invite-only lab class – called Mobile Media Production – with advertising professor Deborah Morrison. After receiving approval from School of Journalism and Communication dean Tim Gleason, it premiered only two months after the Jobs announcement.

“The class started and iPads weren’t even in the stores yet,” said Madison, now an assistant professor and media partnerships manager at the university. “We had no textbooks or anything. We created it as an experimental course.”

The experiment centered on not running from what Madison called “the wild west in terms of our learning curve.” Instead, they embraced it.

“It’s really a question of how do we define what teaching is,” Madison said. “Is teaching that I’m supposed to be in front of the room, have all the answers, and show you something that I have mastered? Or is teaching an exploration I do together with students? I think the students are more interested in the exploration.”

With iPads barely out of their boxes during that first course, students explored apps. They collaborated with several Portland-based media companies to develop app prototypes, including one for a gardening book that sought to enable users to learn more about plant life.

The experience planted the seeds for OR Magazine, which was created in spring 2011 during the course’s second go-round. As Madison put it, “If that [first] year was about apps, 2011 was about publishing.”

The 2011 cover.

Part of the beta

Since 2011, the course has also been about student control, based on a philosophy Madison advocates: “Empower leaders to be leaders.”

For each spring course, he recruits upperclassmen with a variety of skills, including reporting, copy editing, photography, videography and design. During the first weekly session, the students vie for various staff positions, and are voted in by their peers. They then make all the decisions about the thematic concept and specific content of each issue, with Madison, Morrison, and a number of experts on and off campus advising, evaluating, and teaching along the way.

“Our strength was in guiding from the sidelines, as opposed to the kind of front-of-the-room instruction that was more traditional,” Madison said in late 2011, roughly five months after students published the first edition of OR. “That by no means was meant to indicate this was a free-for-all. It’s important to have a structure in place to allow us to achieve.”

Along with structure, timing has been essential to the course’s success. Madison has repeatedly scheduled the class for 8 a.m. on Fridays, as a means of weeding out the less motivated. That bit of timing was engineered on purpose, but the timing of the most significant game-changer for the class was serendipitous.

Six weeks before the spring 2011 term began at UO, Adobe debuted its Digital Publishing Suite (DPS), which enables the creation of a more interactive, tablet-specific audience experience.

Madison read about the software and contacted Adobe staffers, asking if they could provide DPS to students prior to its public release so they could put together a magazine for the iPad. Adobe said yes, making UO’s students, in Madison’s words, “part of the beta.”

At the time, Adobe didn’t even have an instruction manual for DPS. The company asked the students to report back on anything they stumbled across that needed fixing or expanding.

While working on the magazine, students only had access to DPS for the final five weeks of the 10-week term. Functions accessible one day were suddenly gone or shifted the next. And the software was available in a single computer lab that was free solely on weekends and after 4 p.m. on weekdays.

The students soldiered on. “It’s not ‘Oh, I threw it together [at] midnight before it was due because it was just a grade,’ ” said Scott Landis, the issue’s co-editor-in-chief. “This was truly about being professionals and producing something we can be proud of and that can make a difference and change the way people view magazines, and the university.”

Bells and whistles

The first OR magazine aimed to inform readers about UO’s many accomplishments beyond what most people associate with the school – think football, Phil Knight and Nike.

A play button on that first cover brings readers to a black-and-white video depicting a campus library. On screen, a bespectacled student is slowly pushing a cart of books when a hardback title on a nearby shelf grabs his attention.

Once opened, the book flings the student – and by extension the viewer – down a colorful rabbit hole displaying many facets of the university. The images that speed by in time-lapse fashion – and against a techno-beat – appear through a tilt-shift filter. The Adobe After Effects editing option blurs and hyper-focuses certain parts of the photos, suffusing the whole proceedings with what video editor Scott Uyeda called “a figurine movement look.”

On the pages that follow, similar innovations accompany features on campus glass-blowing workshops, the school’s world-class zebrafish breeding facility, the ultimate Frisbee team, and UO professors studying Congolese apes and quantum physics.

But nothing is presented for innovation’s sake. Madison and the students describe a constant tension between experimenting with what is possible and doing what is best for the content and audience.

In a video interview conducted this spring, OR staffer Melanie Burke said that “the temptation to make everything spin and flip and turn and mirror and rotate and pop alive when you touch it is really, really strong because it’s cool and it’s new and we’ve never been able to do this kind of thing before.”

But according to Madison, “just because we have all of these bells and whistles doesn’t mean we want to gratuitously use them.”

The team tries to keep the final file size of each digital issue small enough that readers won’t become frustrated by a long download and give up before giving it a look. They also work to stay true to their editorial vision.

“We’ve had situations where we had video shot for something and went ‘You know what, this is really better told with a slideshow,’” Madison said. “Or ‘This is more oriented around the visuals instead of a lot of copy.’ It’s kind of letting the integrity of the story drive how we go about telling it.”

Dare to adventure

One last decision that has been integral to OR’s success is upending what Madison calls “the old paradigm of workflow, where a person writes an article and maybe a photographer comes out with them and then they turn things over to a design team and the design team decides how to visualize the story and how the page is going to be laid out.”

With OR, everyone is involved in every inch of story planning and execution – the brainstorming, reporting, editing, imagery, multimedia, layout, and interactivity. For this spring’s issue, this collaboration produced a set of gear guides linked to stories on Oregon kayakers, mountaineers, and mountain bikers.

The guides include head-to-toe visual rundowns of what these athletes wear and employ while paddling, pedaling, and climbing. The OR crew interacted from the get-go on the content, visual concept, and background research. They communicated throughout the subsequent reporting, including while staffers gathered audio of the adventure junkies explaining each piece of clothing and equipment. They coordinated a professional photo shoot. And they dabbled with the look and interactive elements of the final layouts, which display the supplies on their own and also attached to the individuals describing their utility.

“It’s a process that is somewhat organic, but everyone’s involved,” Madison said. “It’s not sort of handing it down a conveyor belt, if you will.”

In that spirit, one of the teaser headlines featured on the cover of the spring issue could apply to the magazine itself and the students and faculty members behind it: “Thrillseekers: Those who dare to adventure where others won’t.”

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Why the time is right for The Washington Post & others to boost video initiatives

The Washington Post will formally launch PostTV today — a big gamble that it can widen audience and win significant advertising revenue by producing digital video programs and distributing the segments to various partners.

Announced in concept in June, PostTV includes an existing news summary show called “The Fold.” “On Background” — an interactive news discussion hosted by Nia-Malika Henderson — will debut today at 12:30 p.m. ET, its regular time spot. Later in the week, “In Play,” a political show anchored by Chris Cillizza and former USA Today reporter Jackie Kucinich, will be added.

These three are just a start to a much bigger venture, senior editor for video Andrew Pergam told me in a phone interview. Additional shows will follow, and all will be chopped into segments that can be viewed individually and, over time, made available on other platforms.

The Post is not revealing specific staff and cost numbers or what new advertising revenue it expects to take in. But Pergam did not dispute talk I’ve heard from the newsroom that this is one of the paper’s biggest expansion investments in a decade.

I have written before that there is a try-try-again quality to the Post’s video initiatives. In the past, the Post hired star videographers like Travis Fox (who’s no longer with the paper) to produce ambitious top-of-the-line pieces — an artistic success that did not draw enough audience or advertising to work as a business.

But now the time is right with audience moving from desktop to mobile, where video accounts for a much larger share of news consumption, up to 50 percent according to one study.  Advertiser demand is robust and expanding, and the going rates ($25 per thousand impressions is typical) are multiples higher than what static banner ads command.

The Post will be entering an arms race of sorts with The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and USA Today, all dashing headlong to expand their video offerings for the same reasons.

While PostTV has poached production hires from CNN and MSNBC, Pergam is taking pains to differentiate his programming from typical cable news fare.

For instance, Henderson’s show, he said, “is an attempt to rethink what an interactive show should be.” A topic or a question (for example, “What is one thing the city of Detroit should do?”) will be posted throughout social media platforms early in the day. The live conversation comes during the lunch hour, but the discussion chain stays open after. The aim, Pergam continued, “is to weave social media into the show,” relying principally on PostTV’s Twitter account and the hosts’ individual accounts.

Similarly, Pergam wrote in his June preview, the Cillizza-Kucinich show will aim to “cut through the noise to help you better understand what’s ‘In Play’ in politics right now, and what’s ahead. We’ll give you a sense of the day in Washington, the stories you may have missed and an informed look ahead.”

The Fold” started as a Google TV program, Pergam said, aimed at so-called “cord cutters,” a mostly younger demographic who think they can do without the considerable expense of cable watching time-shifted entertainment shows on alternative platforms like Hulu.

The Wall Street Journal was early to the video party in 2010, with both produced newscasts and training hundreds of journalists out in the field to make brief, rudimentary videos shot on cell phones or simple cameras. 

In the Post’s plans, Pergam said, “there’s room for on the ground reporting, and you’ll see that from us, too.” But for right now, the emphasis is on “going for quality, a higher level of analysis and production.”

Video has been a longtime presence in The New York Times digital editions, ranging from spot analysis of breaking news like a major Supreme Court decision, to David Carr and A.O. Scott’s Friday chats on arts topics to, more recently, actual performance clips. Most are in crisp two- to five-minute segments. 

But the Times too has indicated that lots more is on the way. In its April announcement of a new growth strategy, the third of four planks was:

The development of a more robust and comprehensive video presence is another strategic initiative, which is still in the early stages of development. The company recently appointed a new general manager of video production to lead the effort to scale The Times’s video business to satisfy the demands of both users and advertisers.

USA Today has spent several years developing video segments in its topical specialties, including travel, technology and sports. Sports clips on major league teams and big college programs also have been a hit for many metros.

The Post, which is phasing in a new porous paywall this summer, intends to offer all the video for free. The Times also changed its policy in April so that video views do not count against a monthly quota of open access articles. The company has said videos will remain free for the foreseeable future.

What that says for the developing video business model is that advertising demand and rates are so strong that organizations will make more money by maximizing viewership than extracting subscription revenue from regular users.

PostTV dovetails with another strong trend of the last several years — the rising importance of individual brands (much in the news last week as stats-guy Nate Silver announced he is leaving the Times for ESPN).

Cillizza is an example, as the lead reporter among several for The Fix, a quick-format collection of political tidbits. Other cases in point include Andrew Ross Sorkin’s DealBook at the Times, the Journal’s AllThingsD, featuring Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher with 10 other reporters, and Bill Simmons’ Grantland at ESPN. The Post also announced last week that it is launching its own tech blog and another on state and local government.

To me, this suggests the top national news organizations are still building their franchise on comprehensive reports and editorial judgment but they also want a piece of the action in personal brands like those Andrew Sullivan or Josh Marshall have built on digital-only sites.

I would also take the PostTV debut as consistent with a quickened pace of innovation since Marty Baron became editor the first of the year. Pergam joined the Post to develop the project almost two years ago, after stints teaching at American University and earlier work as a reporter and editor at NBC.

But the pace picked up in 2013, he said. “Seven months has been a pretty aggressive schedule to get this done. It’s been exhilarating but it’s also exhausting.” Read more

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AP expands deal with LiveU to enhance video coverage of live events

Journalism.co.uk

The Associated Press announced a new deal with LiveU, a video technology company, to enhance its live video capabilities.

Journalism.co.uk’s Alastair Reid explains:

The new deal means AP will be able to use LiveU’s mobile video technology for better coverage of live events, which it has already used to report from the hospital in Pretoria where Nelson Mandela is being treated.

“Every major news story that breaks will have live coverage from a video eye-witness within minutes of it happening,” Sandy MacIntyre, AP’s director of global video, told Journalism.co.uk. “When journalists arrive on the scene their first thought is going to be ‘we need to get on air live’ – this new technology allows them to do that quickly and cost-effectively.”

The announcement comes one month after the AP purchased a minority stake in Bambuser — a service that lets users watch, broadcast and share video. At the time, MacIntyre said in a release: “User-generated video content of live and breaking news is the new frontier of news generation.”

Other news organizations are trying to find ways to make it easier for reporters to create decent quality videos. Some are using Videolicious, an iOS app that lets journalists quickly create videos that incorporate audio, stills, interview footage and B-roll from their phones. Read more

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Associated Press purchases minority stake in Bambuser video service

Associated Press

The Associated Press has purchased a minority stake in Bambuser — a service that lets users watch, share and broadcast video.

AP Director of Global Video News Sandy MacIntyre will join Bambuser’s board as “a non-executive director,” the AP says. In a release about the move, MacIntyre said:

“User-generated video content of live and breaking news is the new frontier of news generation. … Bambuser is the proven platform for eyewitnesses around the world to stream their video content and has been invaluable to the AP over the past year, allowing us to access footage of verifiable breaking news stories that would simply not have been possible before. Moreover, we have always been deeply impressed by the proven technology from the small but very talented team at Bambuser.”

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Research reveals ‘key to viral videos’

Harvard Business School

People share videos of ads when doing so makes them look good, according to research by Harvard Business School assistant professor Thales S. Teixeira.

People watch a lot of things online that they would never share with anyone,” Teixeira tells Carmen Nobel.

After comparing the sharing behavior with the emotional responses and personality tests, Teixeira found that the main motivation for viral sharing was egocentricity—the viewer’s desire to derive personal gain from sharing the video. In this case, the potential gain comes in the form of improving the viewer’s reputation among friends and family, for example. Thus, it behooves advertisers to create videos that not only will make the product look good but, if shared, will make the viewer look good, too.

That aligns with something Jeff Sonderman wrote for Poynter last year about why people share news: “A sharable story doesn’t have to be positive, it just has to be powerful,” Sonderman wrote.

It has to create within the reader a deep, authentic human emotion — joy, fear, irony, disgust, wonder.

Or narcissism, apparently. A New York Times marketing study of sharing identified several personality types predisposed toward sharing content, including what it called “Boomerangs”: People who share stuff because it reflects well on them. Read more

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Videolicious: One way reporters can make and file decent videos from their iPhones

There were few specifics in the Chicago Sun-Times’ announcement that it had laid off its photographers and tasked its reporters with capturing photos and video via iPhone. For instance: How in the heck will reporters capture quality video if they have little or no video experience?

One possible answer may be found at The Washington Post, which has deputized some of its reporters to create videos using an iOS app called Videolicious. Post deputy editor of video Jonathan Forsythe stresses that while the paper does “not have any plans for Videolicious to ever replace our high-quality video stories shot and reported by our video department,” some of its journalists have made popular Web-ready videos since it began training staff to use the tool late last year. Read more

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New Guardian, Scoopshot efforts bring elements of automation to photo verification

User-generated content is rife with risk and opportunity.

The opportunity for it to deliver remarkable images is made clear on an almost-daily basis, be it in the midst of a crisis like the Boston Marathon bombings, Hurricane Sandy, or simply someone snapping a notable shot at a local event.

The risk is that images are easily faked, scraped and manipulated.

News organizations and others seeking to source images and information from the crowd therefore have no choice but to push forward with new methods of verification — and to make existing methods quicker and more accurate. So it’s no surprise that we’re seeing initial moves towards automating aspects of the verification process.

The Guardian and Scoopshot both recently unveiled new initiatives to bring an element of automation to verification. In both cases a human element is still essential. But as I noted previously, it’s important to see how much machines can help us deal with the challenge of verifying large amounts of content more quickly.

Authenticity scoring

Scoopshot is a crowdsourced photography service that enables news organizations to source (and assign) photographs from their community and from users around the world. Niko Ruokosuo, the CEO of Scoopshot, detailed his company’s new initiative in a recent announcement.

Ruokosuo said “we’ve developed a new tool within the Scoopshot ecosystem that instantly and graphically shows media companies the authenticity level of any user-submitted image. Our system basically substitutes an inherently flawed manual process that may take an hour per image for a highly-automated, intelligent programme that takes seconds.”

Scoopshot now delivers an authenticity score for each photo calculated based on data about an image — such as whether it was taken using their mobile app, and if the image’s metadata is available.

Similarly, the new GuardianWitness initiative, which enables its community to easily contribute images via the web or mobile apps, offers built-in functionality to gather a submission’s metadata, helping automate one aspect of verification.

Both efforts rely at least partly on EXIF data, which can tell you basic information about a digital image, such as the type of camera used, the exposure information, and other details.

“We wanted at least a basic level of verification to be applied before something was published on GuardianWitness,” Joanna Geary, the Guardian’s digital development editor, told me by email. “We are, however, sensitive to different types of content potentially requiring different levels of verification. So, for example, we might do some very basic copyright checks on a picture of a dog, but would go into much, much more detail for a picture from Syria.”

Along with automating the examination of EXIF data, the Guardian and Scoopshot both use native apps to help make it easier to authenticate aspects of an image. Having photographers work in a controlled setting, such as an app for taking pictures, can help answer questions about how a photo was created, according to Samaruddin Stewart, a current Knight Fellow at Stanford University who is researching “the use of image forensic tools to identify manipulation in potential news photographs.”

“In this route you can oversee the chain of custody and also layer in additional information that today’s smartphones are great at capturing,” he told me.

But Stewart also noted some of this approach’s limitations.

The biggest limitation, Stewart said, is the need to change user behavior, such as launching a specialized app to capture a photo or video instead of simply using a standard camera app, as users do “99% of the time.” Users can import visuals into an app from a camera roll, he noted, but this “heightens the risk of manipulations since the chain is broken.”

Economic incentives for automation

That’s why Scoopshot offers a score instead of a guarantee that an image is real. In the end, it’s up to the journalists accessing the system to decide whether a high score is enough, or if they need to dig deeper into how an image was created.  Speaking about the bars that signal authentication on Scoopshot, Ruokosuo told my colleague Andrew Beaujon that a news organization can “feel pretty good” about a three-bar photo.

A recent Journalism.co.uk article about Scoopshot’s scoring system reported that it enabled a Dutch newspaper to publish “verified images from Scoopshot users within six minutes of asking for submissions.”

The article also noted that the company’s CEO “insisted that some agencies may still manually check images should they wish to, arguing that the software indicates risk rather than complete legitimacy.”

In Scoopshot’s case, automation is aimed at reducing the risk while increasing speed. The faster its clients can use images, the more it might be able to sell.

“Figuring out how to best source and vet these visuals at scale will likely determine who can ultimately grow engagement, differentiation, and likely revenue,” said Stewart.

Now that there are clear economic incentives for helping speed up and perfect this process, we’re likely to see further innovation. That means more tools to help with manipulation detection, analysis and other aspects of photo verification.

One company that’s already working on that is Fourandsix. It offers FourMatch, an extension for Photoshop that “instantly analyzes any open JPEG image to determine whether it is an untouched original from a digital camera.”

I spoke with co-founder Kevin Connor last year about the prospect of achieving 100 percent accuracy for image detection and verification.

“There’s a temptation to want to have some magic bullet or magic algorithm that will tell you whether an image is real or not, and we quickly realized that’s just not going to work,” he told me. “What you have to do is approach it as a detective and examine all the various clues in the image itself and the file that contains the image.”

For the Guardian, the lack of a magic bullet has required a large-scale training effort in the newsroom. As Geary told me, GuardianWitness verification mixes human and machine elements, but it’s “predominantly human.”

“When we built the back-end tools we made it a requirement to pull in some basic information (e.g. EXIF data) and make it visible to our team,” she said. “Then there are other checks they will do — some of which move into investigative work … Online verification can actually be quite a substantial act of journalism.”

In conjunction with the launch of GuardianWitness, the organization gave roughly 100 of its journalists training in verification by working with Storyful, a social-media news service that sources and verifies user-generated video for use by news organizations. (Disclosure: Spundge, the company where I’m a partner, continues to have discussions with Storyful about finding ways to work together.)

“I’m quite proud that we have taken so many through verification training, but I also recognize that it’s never enough and you can’t stop there,” Geary said. “This is a rapidly changing field and — in some cases — an outright fight to avoid spreading misinformation. As with all changing skills, different people pick it up at a different pace dependent on need and on understanding. We’d like to look into being able to keep up with training but to do this in a way that recognizes the demands of a newsroom and help people to learn on the job when they need to.”

Stewart and others say there will never be a Holy Grail of automated photo verification — the human element will always be necessary.

“I do not however think that we’ll have full automation any time soon or that we even should,” he said. “I think editorial scrutiny will always play a role.” But, he added, if he were running or planning a desk for user-generated visuals, “pursuing technical tests” for verification would certainly be a priority.

Stewart provided a good motto for the efforts to automate aspects of verification: “Launch and iterate is a far better strategy than ignore.” Read more

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