The impact of YouTube on journalism

By Fabien Grenon

Do you know YouTube? Of course, every Internet users over the world know YouTube. It’s the most important website of video sharing.  Consumers may think of YouTube mainly as a place for watching laughing babies, funny cats or music videos. But for some time yet it has become a big news outlet as well, posing new challenges to media organisations. What are these new challenges? What is the real impact of YouTube on journalism? Here I will try to answer these questions. 

Since its inception in 2006, YouTube has become increasingly popular. Today, it’s the third most visited website in the all web after Google and Facebook. The statistics show that YouTube also has become such an extraordinary resource for media organisations and journalists in their everyday work.

YouTube as a new source of information:

There are plenty of definitions of what is a social media. In my opinion, Wikipedia give a good explanation on the question. The online Encylopedia notably says:

a social media is an interactive platform via which individuals and communities create and share user-generated content. 

According to this definition, YouTube is clearly a social media as Facebook or Twitter. As on any social media, anyone can participate. So, you can easily create an account on YouTube to spread videos. I’m on YouTube, Barack Obama is on YouTube, RTSCNN news and ABC news are on YouTube… It’s a major place where citizens, politicians, journalists and specialists can share videos and interact with each other. Therefore, YouTube can represent sometimes a good source of information. Let’s see an example.

  • The example of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami :

There are many examples which made YouTube really important for journalists. But one of the last major examples may be the Japanese earthquake and tsunami in 2011. A lot of videos were made during and after the tragedy. Few hours afterwards, first eyewitness videos appeared on YouTube.  The most popular videos notably came from surveillance cameras or citizens’ mobile phones.

A survey from Pew Research Center launched on the subject shows that 39 % of these videos were from citizen, while 51 % were from news organizations. But some of the news organizations videos appeared to have been originally shot by citizens rather than journalists. Those videos posted on YouTube were used as a main source of information. For example, we notice that’s the case of ABC TV News of March 11, 2011.

It’s not necessary to watch all the video to notice that the most of the sequences of the tragedy were shot by citizens during the natural disaster. ABC news used this video shot by citizens to show what was going on in Japan, because they just didn’t have any other images. Is it the only reason ? Not really : by their authentic and spectacular nature, the videos posted by anonymous on the Internet contributes also to enhance the impact. Journalists and media organisations are clearly taking advantage of citizen content. YouTube is initiating a change in journalism as a source to offer a new kind of visual journalism, as the Pew Research center’s survey revealed it.

Youtube as a new channel of information:

YouTube is such a fantastic tool for journalists or media organizations. With over 800 million unique users of YouTube each month, in 43 countries and in 60 languages, the platform of videos sharing can attract a lot of people, more than any television, radio or newspaper over the world. So media organizations have decided to use YouTube not only as a source but as a channel of information too. Let’s illustrate with examples.

  • The example of RTS

RTS (Swiss Radio Television) has its own channel on YouTube. In this case, the platform of videos sharing represents an opportunity to extend its programs. RTS has realized the power of YouTube to reach more people and to increase its audience. So RTS has integrated YouTube in its own website as an extension to watch more videos.

Then, when you go on the RTS YouTube channel, you can find programs that you missed or top stories. This YouTube channel is also a good opportunity to broadcast radio talk shows which are filmed, like the well-known and humorous ”120 secondes” on Couleur3. RTS realized the importance of multimedia and YouTube is a good place to combine audio and video content.

Therefore, the case of RTS shows that YouTube can be used as an extension to watch more videos or videos that you missed.

  • The example of YouTube Reporter’s Center:

 Citizens are becoming increasingly important in journalism notably thanks to social media as YouTube. Media organizations have realized this change. So a channel was created on YouTube in 2009 to teach citizens how to upload more and better videos. Its name is YouTube Reporter’s Center. The YouTube Reporters’ Center is a resource to help citizen journalists learn more about how to report the news, how to use efficiently their mobile phone, how to look like a real journalist. On the channel, some of the nation’s top journalists and news organizations share on  instructional videos with tips and advice for better reporting.

Therefore, the case of YouTube Reporter’s Center shows that YouTube can be used as a channel to train citizen journalists.

The I Files is a new channel on YouTube produced by the Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) and launched on 2nd August 2012. The I Files channel selects and showcases the best investigative videos from around the words. There are a lot of well-known contributors behind like The New York Times, ABC, BBC, Al-Jazeera for instance.  Behind this collaboration, all these media organizations want to show they realized journalism is changing. Nowadays, citizens are becoming increasingly important in investigative journalism. So, they use YouTube which is a major platform for citizen journalism to provide videos in a attempt to bring some much needed attention to the new form of investigative journalism.

Therefore, the case of The I Files show that YouTube can be used to draw attention to the importance of YouTube in journalism today.


Journalism field is changing. All the examples I mentioned show that YouTube is becoming increasingly important in the new form of journalism. And there are still plenty of other examples that I could mention. Journalists and media organizations are trying to adapt to this new journalism. Today, YouTube can be used in different ways : as a new source of information and as a new channel of information. But what tomorrow will bring? YouTube was born 7 years ago, it is a very young platform that can still evolve and offer new resources for journalists and media organizations in the future.

What’s your opinion about the impact of YouTube on journalism? What do you think about the future of YouTube in journalism? I let you leave a comment…

And to see how I worked, how I organized my research, how I checked my sources, I let you go on my own blog => Fabien’s Blog

, , , , , , , , , , ,

  1. #1 by same day loans on January 16, 2013 - 19:14

    Hi, every time i used to check weblog posts here in the early hours in the morning, because i enjoy to gain knowledge of more and more.

  2. #2 by tiket pesawat on February 5, 2014 - 19:04

    Hi to every single one, it’s in fact a good for me to visit
    this web page, it contains priceless Information.

  3. #3 by télécharger virtual dj gratuit on February 21, 2014 - 20:36

    If some one wishes expert view concerning blogging after that i advise him/her to pay a quick visit
    this blog, Keep up the fastidious work.

  4. #4 by fat burner on June 13, 2014 - 17:47

    Such are the ingredients of Adiphene that its one finest selling
    level is the shortage of dangerous uncomfortable
    side effects. Individuals who have underlying medical condition should also consult a physician before taking
    this diet pill. Assuming that you aren’t a super-taught individual,
    you will have some major snags adding on control over your zealous urges
    towards consuming distinctive sustenances.

  5. #5 by who called on June 15, 2014 - 08:00

    I have read so many articles regarding the blogger lovers
    but this paragraph is really a nice post, keep it up.

  6. #6 by google on June 17, 2014 - 18:38

    If there are more than 3 that are all around the same number of
    searches then you have a decision to make. Commenting is crucial to any collaboration, making sure that your voice is heard when it needs to be.
    When the cursor is placed over them, Google+ displays page header and profile picture,
    so good reason to have the most eye-catching of pictures, which
    also looks good in ‘pop-up’.

  7. #7 by Chantal Q. Burgh on September 25, 2014 - 15:44

    Hey there! I know this is somewhat off-topic but I had to ask.

    Does managing a well-established blog like yours take a large amount of work?

    I am completely new to operating a blog however I do write in my journal everyday.

    I’d like to start a blog so I can easily share my own experience and feelings online.
    Please let me know if you have any ideas or tips for brand new aspiring blog owners.

  8. #8 by how to treat tinnitus on September 29, 2014 - 01:11

    So why is being overweight such a direct link to diabetes.

    This means thay everybody who makes use of Adiphene should shed pounds.
    Different studies have demonstrated the profits of Ginseng Panax Root Extract.

  9. #9 by bing on October 5, 2014 - 19:14

    Such are the ingredients of Adiphene that its one finest selling level is the shortage of dangerous uncomfortable side effects.
    There are various surgical methods to combat obesity. With more time
    now passed, those rates would be even higher as obesity is still on the rise.

  10. #10 by fast food on October 6, 2014 - 08:13

    Such are the ingredients of Adiphene that its one finest selling
    level is the shortage of dangerous uncomfortable side effects.
    Perhaps the main reason behind this though is that you have developed a
    dependence on food. The science behind Adiphene consists of 12
    of probably the most power fat preventing ingredients known.

  11. #11 by the tinnitus miracle on October 6, 2014 - 11:12

    Such are the ingredients of Adiphene that its one finest selling level is the shortage of dangerous uncomfortable side effects.
    Perhaps the main reason behind this though is that you have developed
    a dependence on food. Glucomannan is among the most active hunger suppressants in Adiphene,
    and it works to suppress yearnings and help you
    handle your parts.

  12. #12 by tinnitus retraining therapy on October 6, 2014 - 11:32

    Lets begin with stating among the information about
    this excellent revolutionary weight-reduction plan capsule and metabolism price booster.
    This means thay everybody who makes use of Adiphene should shed
    pounds. Indeed Adiphene weight reduction pill is the answer for those who always goes on food regimen however can’t endure the meals carving hunger and the irritability gave rise by dieting.

  13. #13 by twitter on November 17, 2014 - 19:38

    So why is being overweight such a direct link to diabetes.
    Perhaps the main reason behind this though is that you have developed a dependence on food.
    Sonnie Mc – Lemore is a health and fitness blog owner.

  14. #14 by easy money on August 1, 2017 - 11:15

    Hello, its good piece of writing on the topic of media print,
    we all know media is a enormous source of data.

  1. The impact of YouTube on journalism: how I worked | Fabien's blog
  2. joe barry panic away program
  3. rehab retreat
  4. home remedies for acne
  5. barriers
  6. outside world
  7. panic away dvd
  8. lose fat
  9. diet supplements
  10. burn fat
  11. the linden method reviews
  12. anxiety disorder
  13. weight loss diets
  14. attacks jemma
  15. where can i buy omega juicers
  16. proactol fat binding weight loss
  17. most effective acne treatment
  18. joe barry
  19. where to buy meratol
  20. phen375 diet pills
  21. stop anxiety
  22. weight loss help
  23. where to buy adiphene
  24. weight loss dietary supplement
  25. Online Publishing Class: an interactive experience for LSJ students | tanyageddes
  26. Google’s Impact on Journalism | Social Media Masters Student: Brooke Jordan

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: