Five years ago we launched Ourmedia.org as the first free hosting and sharing site for video and digital media (yes, before YouTube). Secretly, I wished that more of the videos, photos and text dispatches coming through the door were high-quality citizen journalism reports.
It took a few years, but citizen journalism has grown up. Exhibit A: GroundReport, a citizen journalism site with an international perspective.
Recently I caught up with founder and CEO Rachel Sterne. GroundReport is a New York-based news platform that allows anyone to submit his or her own news articles, videos and photos. The best submissions are then published. “The idea is to give anyone a chance to participate in the media,” Rachel says. “People who experience world events first-hand can give us authentic context, create more engagement around it and share their story for the world.”
Watch, embed or download the video on Vimeo.
Rachel is proof of the idea that anyone with a good idea can go out and create a citizen publication. Credentials required? She didn’t attend journalism school. “I never heard of citizen journalism” before she started the site, she says.
Note: This was shot in low-light conditions at Scholastic headquarters with a Kodak Zi8 camcorder. I planned to publish this interview earlier this year, but Rachel (@rachelsterne on Twitter) was traveling in India.JD Lasica, founder of Socialmedia.biz, is now co-founder of the cruise discovery engine Cruiseable. See his About page, contact JD or follow him on Twitter or Google Plus.