- Video Crowdsourcing, Changing The Way News Is Brought To You.

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Leading Italian national daily newspaper, La Repubblica, steps up its online social activities with the launch of new platform 'Reporter'. The bespoke video solution, as provided by (the leading video crowdsourcing provider) enables their audience to submit their take on what is newsworthy. The platform, focused on in this instance specifically on Videomakers in the readership, is turning "readers into 'aerials' on the ground". Reporter also accommodates photographers uploading content too, ensuring more creatives can be involved in this era of the 'Citizen Reporter'. Logo

Bespoke video solution, as designed, customised and created by Userfarm allows Repubblica to engage with their audience and for the reader to become the reporter.

The unique new phenomenon of ‘crowdsourcing news' has hit Italy in recent weeks, with a leading quality National newspaper, Repubblica choosing to launch a new platform that sees their audience of readers become their journalists.

This novel idea brings Repubblica into the modern era where a business' or companies' social media footprint has never been more crucial. 'Social media has become a driving force for reporting initiatives and is seen as imperative for content distribution' (Meghan Peters, Mashable News Nov 2011).

Repubblica, launched in Rome (1976), is the leading Italian quality newspaper which in Italy today and has a circulation of over half a million readers. Founder, Eugenio Scalfari adopted a left-liberal view for his paper, seeing a rise in popularity with the student movement in 1977 spiking an increase in readership. In the early years, the comments section of the newspaper was written in a way to generate a reaction from usually passive readers, by publishing thought provoking topics. This aspect has never been more clearly evident, with the launch of a new thought provoked platform, 'Reporter'. Reporter is an intermediary between the newspaper and its followers, allowing them to upload user generated content, and effectively become the eyes and ears of newspaper at street level.

"Reporter, the bespoke video solution as designed, customised and created by Userfarm, allows Repubblica to engage with their audience and for their reader to become the reporter" (Paul McCarthy, Userfarm Sales Director). Users can register for free and begin submitting videos (or photos) onto the network, where others can comment, share and interact on news-worthy content. Riccardo Staglianò, one of Repubblica's key journalists, explained that Reporter allows users to contribute more easily to the existing method of article distribution in this modern era of the 'Citizen Reporter'. 'Readers and non-professional journalists could only send an email suggesting a subject or submitting a video, while now Reporter gives readers and videomakers a more organized and formalised structure to contribute to the paper' (Riccardo Staglianò, Repubblica Apr 2012)

Userfarm, launched in 2009, provides a platform which reaches out to a global video crowdsourcing network. With a community of over 34,000 creative videomakers and animators, the Userfarm service supports growing demand for high-quality, low-cost and original video content. What’s more; by creating competitions and offering prizes, they create a huge social buzz to any specific target demographic. Having previously worked with brands such as Disney, Fiat, Sky, Starbucks, Vodafone, Microsoft, Nissan and provided bespoke platforms for Sony Ericsson and Tiscali, Bruno Pelligrini, CEO, TheBlogTV, the parent company of Userfarm said "We aim to transform the way video is created", speaking at the opening of Userfarm offices in London (Jun 2011). Videomakers and creatives participate on calls for videos, creative ideas and a variety of video solution . They are paid for their contributions at which point the intellectual property is passed over to the client, unlike similar platforms used by CNN (CNN iReport) and Metro (Metro Reporter, France), where publications are done for free.

Repubblica is taking a bold step forwards by choosing a partner (Userfarm) that strongly enforces quality and also by implementing their own Video journalism school, ‘The Academy’, where aspiring video journalists will work under the supervision of critically acclaimed director Paolo Sorrentino (This Must Be the Place, Il Divo). “Reporter is a unique white label solution for the ever increasing demand for video content. The platformallows Repubblica to draw on the creativity of videomakers within the readership, which results in a higher level of engagement and resonance with their audience. More so, by rewarding creatives for their participation, this truly is a win-win scenario for everyone” (Vijay Sodiwala, Userfarm Global Head, Apr 2012).

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Faisal Mahmud
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