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Web helps reading

Why not citizen journalism

BRIAN GREENE -- Long-time Irish internet user BHG asks why the national networks want images from mobile phones after the London bombings. "Why are network TV news brands falling over each other to get our pics and vidz from the terror zone? ... What is it they want?" Greene points out "there are AP & Reuters vans in London and they will be beaming clean feed live within minutes of an incident. If the networks have broadcast quality pictures why go for wobble and smudgie low res?" He answers himself.

"They want to be edgy. TV news wants a new angle and perspective".

Greene thinks "they are lowering technical and journalistic standards. Eye witness reporting, mixed with blogging and podcasting has its space. Its cross over to mainstream TV makes me a little uncomfortable". And why?

Because "with 3G and video phones prim proper news channels are giving way to 'me TV' even if there is little value in the pictures and less in the sound on offer. There have been times in the past where amature footage was all that was available and it was used with the 'amateur footage' bar added to the graphic".

It's possible to downgrade quality reportage when assembling a mosaic of mobile phone images. As Greene says, "ham cams have their place and importance (but) we are not so hungry that we must lower the standard so far that what we end up with is citizen band reporting just because its cool".

Brian Greene -- "ME TV"
Steve Outing -- "Is there hope for citizen reporting?"