We encourage all our members to use their mobiles as a tool to stream live video using a simple qik.com application.
We have an online TV media channel hosted with Livestream.com. And if you are interested in streaming live community news to our TV channel, please contact either David Aron or Pamela Juhl (45) 26 79 43 82 or send us a mail firstname.lastname@example.org
You may have caught our live coverage of the Republican National Convention. We seemed to have cameras where ever the action was and were reporting what was happening hours if not days before the legacy media.
So how did The UpTake, a non-profit that operates on a shoestring and the kindness of donors, manage to out-do the multi-million dollar corporate media? Simple: Train, Organize and Crowd source.
We discovered people learn the most when we do hands-on, one-on-one sessions to cover the basics. Most important was to give people feedback on what they did.
Now you have a bunch of people who can run a camera and want to cover news. That’s great! But what are they all going to do? This is where applying the same organization techniques used in political campaigns comes into play.
We turned to free services available on the web to keep track of volunteers, story ideas, events and of course equipment. The challenge was to connect volunteers with story assignments and equipment. We didn’t have our own equipment to start, so we created a database of equipment our volunteers owned and were willing to lend out. We let people submit story ideas to our website.
The hard part was finding volunteers to cover those stories. So we put one person in charge of just connecting volunteers and stories.
(video of Recount and trial)
Organizing volunteers was integral to our marathon coverage of Minnesota’s US Senate recount and Election Contest Trial. The UpTake was the ONLY media to cover every minute of this and thousands around the world watched daily... for several months.
Standup: Organizing can be as low-tech as listing what might happen on a sheet of paper and asking people who is interested in going there with a camera. It can also be as high-tech as using the cutting edge tools.
Using Cover it Live and Twitter during live events we’re able let our audience help us with the reporting. The time stamp on both services helps us locate the important snippets of video out of the hours we record... allowing our volunteers to quickly edit clips that are interesting.
Using a free service called Tubemogul, we can publish those clips to You Tube, Blip and more than a dozen other video websites in a matter of minutes.
During the RNC we used crowd sourcing on twitter to weretrack where news was happening by searching for the RNC hashtag or following particular people’s tweets.
Since our volunteers were dispersed all over downtown, we could have someone on the scene in minutes. And thanks to a free service called Qik, we were able to stream live video of the event as it happened.
We use two kinds of phones for live streaming: The Nokia N-95 and the iPhone. Both lack a good lens and a good microphone. But we were able to solve part of that problem by using adaptors to plug in a professional microphone. These phones gave us another important advantage: police couldn’t confiscate our video.
That’s an important consideration because police arrested dozens of journalists, including one of our own. Once the video was streamed from the phone, it was on a server where the police couldn’t reach it.
We still sent people out with regular tape cameras... and they came back with compelling video that we quickly captured, edited and distributed for the whole world to see.
The UpTake - a shoestring volunteer operation -- was able to do all of this not only because the technology to do it was easy and affordable... but because we were able to organize. That is the secret ingredient in any citizen journalism organization... and it’s something we’re willing to teach others.
The free services The UpTake uses are:
Zanby (social networking, content management)
Google Docs (spreadsheets for statistical analysis, shared text documents for collaborative writing)
Zoho (Databases for volunteers and story ideas)
Cover It Live (live blogging)
Twitter (Crowd sourcing and reporting)
Tubemogul (Video distribution tool)
You Tube (Video distribution site)
Blip (Video distribution site)
Qik (Live video streaming from phones)
Livestream (Live video streaming from computers)
1. The videos are broadcast live, not stored on the phone, unless you are out of cell or WiFi range. Then they are sent "over the air" when you get back in range, one by one. Its that easy. Open qik, and go into the menu. Find "settings" and set it to "run in background" if that option is there. You also need to go into settings-> network on your phone and make sure that HSPDA (3g) or dual mode is set to on. This is the broadband wireless cell net work. Your phone has WiFi, too! Make a habit of leaving Wifi on on the phone, and if there is no "open" or public network where you are, i recommend getting into the habit of geting the log in codes from anybody you can at the place of interview if, possible. This will ensure the stream goes straight through to the internet, instead of through the cell network first, also saving you money.
2. On your qik channel, go to: edit profile -> edit networks-> and and add the user log in and password you made for the livestream channel Pam invited you to in the "livestream" section of the edit networks section on qik. "Channel name" is cphvoice. Check "go auto live" You are now ready to stream live to cphvoice.
You can also add the "facebook connect" section here, if you want to send the qiks to your FB profile as well. If you have a Twitter account, fill that in, too. This will send links to twitter every time you broadcast. Fill in: "Broadcasting live for The Copenhagen Voice" in the Twitter section on qik. I really recommend Twitter. If you dont have your own, you can Tweet to ours for now. Ask for the log in, If you need it.
3. The videos are either sent live automatically, or delayed until you get in cell/ Wifi range. Just don't turn your phone off, if qik is still sending or "buffering", otherwise we lose the recordings... for ever. All recordings are viewable on your qik profile. They are simultaneously pushed out to our WebTV channel, so dont worry about the time difference when you are broadcasting. In other words, qik records the videos on the internet, not your phone. You can use the phones camera recorder as a back up, if qik stalls.