Snippets From A Fast-Changing World

An independent observer looks at things differently to someone who is right in the middle.

Selling Video Scoops Online

Citizenside, other websites collect and syndicate amateur videos to professional news groups
By MAX COLCHESTER

PARIS—French website Citizenside recently sold a grainy video of British fashion designer John Galliano conducting an anti-Semitic rant to news organizations around the world.

Mr. Galliano lost his job, and Citizenside pocketed a six-figure bounty.

This was just the latest scoop for the Paris-based company which is one of several websites that collect and syndicate amateur videos to professional news organizations. Citizenside says it sold the Galliano clip for more than €100,000, or about $139,000...more

Japan Quake Shows the Limits of User-Generate Content

by Erik Sass

One of the big promises of the digital age was that journalism would be transformed by an army of amateur videographers – namely, all of us regular citizens – who might just happen to be nearby when something important goes down. And it’s true this kind of user-generate content has provided some pretty amazing scoops and footage from incidents which might otherwise have been missed by “real” TV news outfits: some of the most alarming video I have ever seen is amateur, close-up footage of tornadoes (I mean really close-up – way closer than any professional news outfit would get). But it’s also clear that the close-up perspective of the random passer-by just can’t compete with professionals when it comes to certain types of events...more