Citizen Journalism And The Need To Verify

Nov 4, 2011

Researchers at Duke University are making it easier for citizen journalists and traditional media companies to work together.

Many of the stories told during the Arab spring were not coming from traditional media organizations - or professional reporters. They were told in photos and videos captured on smartphones by people in their own neighborhoods.

Landon Cox is a computer scientist at Duke. He and a group of researchers there have come up with YouProve, smartphone software that solves two key problems with citizen journalism.

Landon Cox: "Allowing people to remain anonymous and contribute and allowing services to verify the data is authentic without actually having to know who contributed the data was a really important goal for us."

YouProve can alert recipients whether a photo or video has been altered, without requiring the two entities to connect with each other. Cox says YouProve could be widely used in a couple of years.