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April 16, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

On the same day that television networks were featuring amateur video shot during the bombing and aftermath at the Boston marathon, Britain’s Guardian newspaper announced coincidentally that it was launching a digital platform called GuardianWitness that will allow readers to submit photos and videos to the newspaper via a free app on Apple iPhones or Google Android smartphones. In a statement, Joanna Geary, the Guardian‘s social and communities editor, said that the platform underlines the newspaper’s “recognition that journalism is now a two-way conversation and will open up our site as we never have before. Not only will this make it even easier for our readers to get involved in our journalism … it will also provide our journalists with a fantastic new tool, providing them with insights and views that we perhaps don’t yet have access to.” She said that all of the photos and videos will be vetted by Guardian editors with some being added to journalists’ news coverage and others being directed to a spin-off GuardianWitness website. She did not indicate whether the citizen journalists who contribute their photos and videos would be remunerated for them. Meanwhile, CNET observed today (Tuesday) that video shot by spectators at the marathon could prove to be useful to authorities investigating the incident but that there is currently no way for anyone to submit their videos and no procedure by Boston officials to sort through them if there were.