Social media platforms have quickly become sources of breaking news, and mainstream news outlets are trying to plug into them to stay relevant. Fox News is the latest organization willing to test the newsgathering skills of social networkers, working with News Corp (NYSE: NWS). sibling MySpace to launch citizen journalism hub uReport.
MySpace uReport isn’t as extensive as portals like iReport or NowPublic. MySpace members can only upload and tag photos and videos — not actual stories — and Fox retains editorial control of the home page. Currently, it’s pretty bare, sans thumbnails of Fox News personalities and links to their MySpace profile pages. (The name “uReport” is a nice play on the Fox News catchphrase “We Report.You Decide,” and, of course, it’s the opposite of CNN’s “iReport.”)
But by keeping a tighter grip on what gets posted as “news,” Fox avoids potential credibility or legal issues like the backlash CNN faced after the false story about Steve Jobs having a heart attack got picked up from iReport. If a MySpace member’s content is pertinent, it could wind up on air via Fox News Channel or on FoxNews.com; it will be interesting to see what kinds of clips and photos users think might be relevant to Fox, and even more interesting to see what percentage of them Fox in turn feeds to its audience. Release.
Photo Credit: lypp