The Secret life of mobile phones

February 28, 2011

“Mobile computing will impact our world with the same force as the Internet did in the late 1990s” – Mark Briggs

The world is going mobile, and quickly. Being able to use cellular phones for journalism is absolutely critical to journalists, as it always them to “report in any medium, from anywhere, anytime.”

In order to understand the why mobile journalism is so critical, it is important to understand how it aides reporters.

  1. You are able to report from the scene of a breaking news event before camera crews and photographers can get on location
  2. You are able to view, capture, publish, and broadcast in one location
  3. You can live blog and give your readers the facts as your story progresses

So now that you know how mobile journalism helps you, you need to understand when to “go mobile” on a story. Mark Briggs says you should ask yourself the following questions in order to decide:

  • Will the audience benefit if we can take them there?
  • Will the journalism be better if it’s done on location and with urgency?
  • Can this event be effectively communicated in small chunks over time?
  • Will sound reporting or video footage, turned around quickly, help people understand the story?

When you decide that you will partake in mobile journalism, you need to determine what sort of equipment you will bring with you. Mark Briggs classifies mobile reporters in two ways:

  • Light Packers who only need a smart phone with a quality camera, full keyboard, and mobile Internet capability

  • Gearheads who need laptop, mobile Internet, camera, video camera, tripod, audio recorder, headphone, microphone, and cell phone access

With the knowledge of what equipment you will need, what questions to ask to decide about going mobile, and why mobile blogging is extremely beneficial, you are ready to go out in to the “mobile, global world.” Get your camera phone ready, stories are waiting for you around every corner. With just a little luck and expertise you may be the next journalist who was “in the right place, at the right time,” reporting a breaking news story first.

Entry Filed under: Briggs "Journalism Next" Chapter Reviews. Posted in  Briggs "Journalism Next" Chapter Reviews Tags: , , , .

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