CNN launches iReport, gets serious about Citizen Journalism?

CNN will launch a new Citizen Journalism portal, reports Mediaweek. Going by the name iReport, the project will be a portal for user-generated video news.

The CNN has been accepting photos and videos (called, in CNN speak, I-Reports) by their viewers since 2006. So the TV channel has a little bit of experience with user-generated content.

However, as Mashable points out, it’s pretty unclear where the CNN will try to go with Susan Grant, executive vp of CNN News Services, is quoted quite contradictory. On the one hand, Grant claims that iReport will be “completely unvetted.” On the other hand, she says: “We’ll be telling people in lots of different ways that it’s a post-moderated site.”

Now that’s quite a difference, I’d say. However, I’ll be more than happy to give the CNN a chance here. If they get it right, a smart video news portal by citizen journalists for citizens could be quite an ambitious project. Which leaves me hoping – but not quite believing – that Mashable’s Mark Hopkins is wrong when he claims that “CNN is completely blinded by the dollar signs” involved in citizen journalism.

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