Empowering the individual storyteller
"Mobile Journalism is about empowering the individual storyteller to use whatever consumer technology they have available to them to make the best possible visual story that they can. I would like to think that Mobile Journalism definition can be extended to other mobile devices beyond smartphones, like DSLR cameras, laptops, GoPros ... "Glen Mulcahy
Founder of Mojocon
Background of Mojo
Stories for better understanding mobile journalism
1925 • THE PRINTED PRESS AND THE LEICA: The history of mobile journalism could not be explained without going back to the release of the first Leica in 1925. The small 35 mm camera designed in 1913 by Oskar Barnack at the workshops of the German company Leitz, was not only a great technological innovation but also represented an authentic conceptual revolution that would change 20th-century photojournalism. The Leica 1 gave photographers and reporters freedom of movement, enabling them to leave their heavy equipment in the studio and go outside. They could focus on capturing moments, on the action, on telling visual stories. As an example, the work of photojournalists like Robert Capa or Henri Cartier Bresson and the founding of the Magnum agency in 1947 would never have been possible without their small Leicas.
1953 • THE TV AND THE "WALKIE-LOOKIE: By the late 1930s, after the first broadcasting tests, it was not difficult to suspect that television would completely change the way we would be informed. However, recording equipment was large and heavy and could only be used inside studios and on sets. At best, it could be transported in large trucks to cover very special events such as the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953, undoubtedly a key milestone in the history of the BBC. But it was not until the appearance of the Walkie-Lookie from RCA. the first truly portable camera • that reporters could go out and move among the people. Only then could the world experience in the first person and without leaving their couches what was going on out there, although yes, still in black and white.
2007 • THE INTERNET AND THE IPHONE: During the 1990s, the Internet began to amass a tremendous amount of information and soon became the place where everyone went to find out what was going on in the world. However, updating the content was not an immediate task or one that was accessible to just anyone. The following decade was key, with the arrival of Web 2.0 facilitating user interaction, blogs popped up and social media networks were born, but everything continued to be done from a desktop computer in the office. In 2007 the release of the iPhone changed everything. It changed the way we communicate, listen to music, get informed ... but it especially changed the way all of humanity started to create and share content in an easy, fast, and global way. Just as with the first Leica, journalists immediately saw the opportunity and started using their smartphones to completely change the way they created and shared stories in the new digital Society.
6 GOOD REASONS FOR MOBILE JOURNALISM
1. It's Easy
You probably already know how to use the video camera on your smartphone and if you are a journalist, you probably also know how to tell a compelling story. Smartphones have broken most of the technological barriers that used to exist between your stories and your audience and have turned video production into something that anyone can do with only a few hours of training and some practice.
2. It's Fast
Be the first to broadcast a breaking news or event. Other media will have to arrange a full broadcast crew, make sure all the equipment is available, get there and set up everything on arrival before going live. A MoJo only needs to pick his backpack, get there and start broadcasting.
3. Go Unnoticed
Mobile Journalists can go unnoticed thanks to their small equipment. Smartphones are not perceived as press cameras so you will be able to shoot stories in places where standard video journalists would never dare to go.
4. Get Closer
Having a light and small equipment that fits in a small messenger bag is a great advantage for getting closer to some stories. Big cameras with extra lightning and sound equipment are simply too big to get into some places. No matter if it is a conference hall, a plane or a cave, pick up your mobile gear and tell the story to your audience.
5. Break Barriers
People are less intimidated when being interviewed with a phone than with a big camera. It is much more discreet, less intrusive and more familiar, so people just tend to be far more sincere and more open as a result. Break barriers between your audience and the story by going mobile.
6. Save Costs
Mobile Journalism can help you or your organization save costs. Not only at the moment of buying new equipment, but also when training personnel or maintaining your gear. One of the reasons why mobile journalism is growing so fast is thanks to its impact on the bottom line for freelance journos, medium production companies or large broadcasting corporations.