Mobile Journalism

Mobile Journalism

The mobile phone may be the one most powerful tool or technology in developing countries today. This session will focus on the topic of mobile technologies for media development and examine how is mobile telephony impacting on media and journalism directly? Two speakers are invited to highlight two aspects of mobile reporting: the gathering and dissemination of information.

  1. Mobile phones can be a simple but powerful tool to crowd source information gathering as a mobile empowers its user to report via text, photo or video what is happening locally. What new opportunities and challenges in terms of news verification does this offer to media organisations in developing countries and what experiences have been made with mobile reporting and crowd sourcing for information gathering?
  2. Mobile phones are being used to transmit information to audiences otherwise underserved with news: here simple voice‐based or SMS‐based news services can have powerful effects. What experiences have been made with mobile news services so far and how are literacy problems being addressed by voice­‐based services?

Further questions of interest will be:

  • In what ways mobile reporting play a role in the process of democratization and citizen empowerment (e.g. electoral campaigns)?
  • What are limitations and preconditions for successful mobile media initiatives?
  • What technical resources and skills are needed?
  • What can media development agencies do to enhance mobile journalism?
  • When and where does support of mobile journalism make sense? When and where does it contribute to development in a wider sense?

Brenda Burrell – Kubatana/Freedom Fone
Sean Mc Donald – FrontlineSMS

Geraldine de Bastion – newthinking communications

Freedom Fone
Frontline SMS
Mobile Media Toolkit
“Making the most of mobiles” at

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