CNN Worldwide recently introduced a user-generated feature called I-Reports, whereby the public can submit video, audio, articles and graphics for use online or on-air. The I-Reports consist of content viewers capture with cell phones, cameras and other devices. Once submitted via email or at the CNN Exchange website (located at www.CNN.com/Exchange), the content is reviewed by CNN before being considered for online or on-air use. (So, forget about sending clips of your Grandmother’s birthday party… unless it took place during a hurricane.)
CNN.com SVP and executive producer Mitch Gelman said at CNN Exchange’s August launch, ‘User-generated content has the potential to play a pivotal role in journalism whether it’s online or offline. With CNN Exchange, we’ve essentially created a one-stop shop for CNN.com users to share their contributions with other Internet users, as well as to weigh in on the day’s most pressing news.’
In addition to the I-Reports, the CNN Exchange page includes a section highlighting the best user contributions, and an online toolkit in which CNN producers, correspondents and photographers give tips on creating and submitting stories. After all, you don’t want your thunder storm footage to be too shaky.