How Snapchat protects sources’ identity, Edward Snowden’s safer smartphone for journalists and more in this week's Digital Media Mash Up, produced by the Center for International Media Assistance.
The rise of 'selfie journalism' in India: using Snapchat for digital storytelling
"It's about experimenting with every platform and not taking them at face value. If you take Snapchat at face value, it's for teenagers sharing nudies. You've got to look beyond that, you've got to look at how you can apply that technology for journalistic storytelling."
These are the words of 27-year-old journalist Yusuf Omar. On July 14, his work went viral after he used Snapchat to interview survivors of sexual abuse through a powerful and unique technique – Snapchat filters. The filters allowed the women to shield their identities and tell their stories for the first time without fear of being subject to the societal stigma surrounding rape. (International Business Times, 7/16)
Edward Snowden's new research aims to keep smartphones from betraying their owners
In early 2012, Marie Colvin, an acclaimed international journalist from New York, entered the besieged city of Homs, Syria, while reporting for London’s Sunday Times. She wrote of a difficult journey involving “a smugglers’ route, which I promised not to reveal, climbing over walls in the dark and slipping into muddy trenches.” Despite the covert approach, Syrian forces still managed to get to Colvin; under orders to “kill any journalist that set foot on Syrian soil,” they bombed the makeshift media center she was working in, killing her and one other journalist and injuring two others.
Syrian forces may have found Colvin by tracing her phone, according to a lawsuit filed by Colvin’s family this month. Syrian military intelligence used “signal interception devices to monitor satellite dish and cellphone communications and trace journalists’ locations,” the suit says. (The Intercept, 7/21)
Who owns the news consumer: social media platforms or publishers?
The relationship between news organizations and platform companies has become far closer far more quickly than anyone predicted. The increasing influence of a handful of West Coast companies is shaping every aspect of news production, distribution and monetization.
In the past 18 months, companies including Facebook, Apple, Twitter, Snapchat and Google have moved from having an arm’s length relationship with journalism to being dominant forces in the news ecosystem. By encouraging news publishers to post directly onto new channels, such as Facebook Instant Articles and Snapchat Discover, tech companies are now actively involved in every aspect of journalism. (Emily Bell, Columbia Journalism Review, 6/21)
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Main image CC-licensed by Flickr via doctorho.