Panel Discussion: Grassroots Surge – Trust and User Generated Content
For the first time in the media, history is being written in part by the public. From the Arab spring to the Occupy Movement, reporting by citizens has recently taken centre stage, whether on traditional broadcast outlets or the internet. Mobile footage is increasingly used in news reporting and documentary, especially in conflict areas that are difficult to access. How does this uncorroborated footage affect the contract with the viewer? With pressure to bring viewers the news as it is happening, is there enough time to verify the material? In countries where traditional reporting is subject to censorship, more citizen journalists are reporting for themselves via the internet. Is this a revolution of direct democracy? Is this more or less trustworthy than traditional reporting? What opportunities does user generated content present for filmmakers?
This panel discussion took place at Between the Lines festival in 2013. Presented by DocHouse and the Frontline Club, Between the Lines explored the challenges facing documentary makers, investigative journalists and citizen reporters in the new media landscape.