Continuing the trend of mainstream media integrating user-generated content into its programming, CBS has launched EyeMobile for iPhone, allowing its users to submit photos and videos to the company’s citizen journalism site: CBSEyeMobile.com. While several cable networks have launched similar efforts – CNN with iReport and FoxNews with uReport – CBS is the first of the “big three” broadcast networks to get into the game.
In addition to being able to upload content to EyeMobile, the app includes options for viewing content uploaded by others and leaving comments. As for the EyeMobile website, it is very YouTube-esque, allowing you to browse photos and videos by most recent, most viewed, and most commented. The site also allows you to copy and paste code to embed photos and videos elsewhere.
What’s not clear about EyeMobile is how it might integrate with the company’s on-air reporting. Both CNN and Fox News routinely show user-submitted video, while CNN is taking things a step further by utilizing Twitter in its on-air reporting. Of course, CBS has a lot less news coverage than the 24×7 cable networks – 30 minutes every night in addition to The Early Show every morning.
On the other hand, those shows have a much larger audience than most cable programming, so if CBS is serious about pushing citizen journalism, they certainly will have ample opportunity to promote EyeMobile and its new iPhone application. Additionally, with CNET now under the CBS umbrella, they can also reach out to the tech savvy community to encourage users to submit content. In short, all the pieces seem to be there for CBS to execute a big citizen journalism initiative – it’s just a matter of how serious they are about pushing it.
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