Continuing coverage from Baltimore enables deeper look at live-streaming mobile video journalism

Above: Police deploy tear gas Tuesday night in Baltimore, as seen through the Pericope reporting of Paul Lewis, Washington correspondent for The Guardian.

After following live-streamed reports from Saturday’s march and Monday’s violence in Baltimore, we’re beginning to find more thoughtful responses emerging in response to the new practice.

A post on Medium says that: “While the virtual can never be a direct substitute for the physical, tools like Periscope can help to capture the golden moments of breaking news by helping journalists establish an authentic developing narrative.” Author Saul of Hearts, who also writes for continues: “Precious moments such as (Paul) Lewisinterviews with community members display the power of #livejournalism.

Meanwhile, a post by Selena Larson at The Daily Dot points out that while a handful of journalists have been live-streaming from Baltimore: “Neither Periscope or Meerkat seems to have caught on with regular citizens,” and “haven’t quite lived up to the hype of being go-to sources of real-time news in conflict areas or protest zones.”

As Larson explains, sharing and saving is still very difficult with the latest mobile video apps, compared with “channels already popular among the masses—and, most importantly, their friends and family,” such as Vine, Instagram, and Twitter’s built-in video.

Meanwhile, while Mashable and Techcrunch both reported yesterday that Periscope picked up a million users within ten days of launch, The Verge reminded us that Twitter now reports having 300 million active users.

Finally, I spotted a couple of people tweeting last night that the BBC’s Newsnight apparently went live on air from Baltimore while using Persicope:

And then this morning, the BBC’s Rajini Vaidyanathan tweeted: “LIVE on #Periscope: #Baltimore police and troops at national harbour..

Is there a good reason why American news organizations aren’t taking the lead?

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Jim MacMillan

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I am a solutions-oriented independent multimedia journalist, based in Philadelphia.
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Jim MacMillan

I am a solutions-oriented independent multimedia journalist, based in Philadelphia.

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