CNN boosts 'citizen journalism' with showcase site

CNN is to launch a user-generated content portal on its homepage, showcasing viewer submitted video, audio and written reports, in its latest push to encourage citizen journalism. The CNN Exchange website will include a spotlight section highlighting the best user contributions, CNN blogs and an online toolkit offering tips from CNN journalists about how to submit reports. It is not the first time CNN has given space to user-generated content on its website; the broadcaster created a fan zone as part of its World Cup coverage, which it said was inundated with images and stories from football fans. Mitch Gelman, senior vice-president and executive producer for, said: "With CNN Exchange, we've essentially created a one-stop shop for users to share their contributions with other Internet users, as well as to weigh in on the day's most pressing news." CNN said it intends its user-generated platform to feature content captured by mobile phones, cameras and other electronic devices. Last month, Nokia unveiled the winner of its first Citizen Journalism Awards; an anonymously submitted image of the aftermath of the Tavistock Square bombing in London on July 7 last year. Second place went to an aerial shot of the Buncefield oil depot fire taken by David Otway, with another image of the London 7/7 Tube bombings, submitted by Alexander Chadwick, completing the top three. No responsibility can be accepted for the content of external Internet sites.

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