CNN may not pay for the thousands of reports sent in from around the globe, but it will honor some citizen journalists who contributed to its broadcasts with awards.
CNN launched the first edition of its iReport Awards with six categories: Breaking News, Original Reporting, Compelling Imagery (photos or video), Commentary, Personal Story and Interview.
There are 30 citizen journalist reports broadcast in 2010 competing for the awards. They range from the photo of a man rescued a month after the earthquake in Haiti to a video report from the Third Annual Topless Day in Venice Beach, Calif. They will be judged by a panel of seven media experts. There is also is a community choice pick for best overall video. Viewers can place their votes until March 7 by clicking here.
Citizen journalism awards have been around almost as long as the recent surge in citizen journalism, as a way for news organizations to thank people for contributions that are often not otherwise paid for.
The best CNN iReports will receive a trophy, according to iReport community manager David Williams.
CNN launched iReport in 2006 as a way to involve citizens in the newsgathering process.