London-based crowdsourced news agency Blottr has landed another big publishing fish. The New York Times News Service and Syndicate will join its distribution network and will offer its clients a specially curated feed of Blottr’s verified crowdsourced news videos from events around the world.
The curated feed delivers four to five daily weekday videos from breaking news events around the globe. Each video includes a brief textual summary of the video for context and documentation tracing the verification process for that video.
“The type of footage Blottr surface is raw, real and compelling. It’s always first-hand reports, captured on video and fully verified and cleared for use by Blottr’s own team. We look forward to working closely with The New York Times News Service & Syndicate to deliver an exceptional video product for its clients,” said Adam Baker, Founder of Blottr.
Formed in London in August 2010, Blottr has developed a worldwide contributor network that reports on news events as they happen. Using technology and the company’s own editorial team, footage is verified and cleared for use within minutes. It now has more than 500,000 contributors worldwide and its service is now used by 220 newsrooms.
Its wire-style service for news outlets is called NewsPoint and this content found in the ‘visual reporting’ section of the New York Times Syndicate. Contributors that have a proven track record of quality content are paid for their work.
The citizen journalism business model has few peers and is interesting, although there has been a previous precedent of Ushahidi in Kenya, which originally reported on the Kenyan riots of 2007 and has since been a hugely influential site for the Haitian and Chilean earthquakes. Blottr’s video element, however, adds a new dimension.