As I was pondering the impact of video journalism on news reporting, I started to recall some of my earliest memories of ground-breaking news.
4th June 1989, the crackdown in Tiananmen Square started in earnest. I was 16 years old and have very clear memories of Kate Adie reporting. In one program before the military crackdown she was on a bike in the square doing a covert piece to camera – I can remember being very impressed.
As I watch the footage now, it is interesting to recognise that there were no mobile phone videos and very few citizen journalists back then. The television channels had to rely on their own footage, sharing with one and other for broadcast.
Whilst there would undoubtedly be more footage if this were to happen today (how much longer can it be before such an uprising in China is seen again), I am not sure the coverage would be materially enhanced by the increase in images.
These reports from 1989 told the audience exactly what was going on:
Compare this to the Libyan uprising and the plethora of images. For some stories, more may not always be more……