“One man, one year, one world of conflict!”
I can’t be the only one who thinks this sounds like a tv format- as so much does on the web these days. As commissioning editors churn out tired ideas on our tv screens, along come the forward-thinking web developers. I’ve certainly never heard of a war correspondent working exclusively online like Kevin Sites did for Yahoo back in 2006-08. I find his hotzone site very interesting in the context of the things we’ve been looking at. Most of all I believe it offers a glimpse into the future- video blog entries uploaded each week, made by one man with minimal, necessary equipment.
It seems remarkable that all the content can come from a mere rucksack of stuff. Just look at the part of the site where it shows Kevin’s equipment; it shows you just how far technology has come in a few years. The cameras are light, the satellite phone is tiny and there are entire editing suites on computers the size of hardback books.
As technology becomes easier, more complex, smaller and cheaper the possibilities become great- but questions are raised. The technology is available to almost anyone and the number of voices straining to be heard rises and rises. This is the twitter universe. We choose who we listen to but have less of an idea about who they are.
The hotzone may be a bad example because the reporting is excellent and Sites is obviously a well-respected correspondent, but this is still one man’s take on the world. The camera never lies? The irony of that old saying is that the camera can only ever show the perspective of the person who uses it. If journalists are expected to create accurate unbiased reports, it’s surely a lot harder to do it alone?