November 24, 2009 By Corey McKenna
YouTube has become a channel for elected officials and emergency managers to watch and use to engage citizens, with citizens often posting the first footage of disasters. Now, the site is launching a new channel aimed at connecting citizen videographers with news organizations looking for live footage.
On Tuesday, YouTube is scheduled to launch a new channel where citizens can upload footage of newsworthy events to be picked up by media outlets. The channel, called YouTube Direct, allows citizens to record footage of an event and then submit it to a participating news organization's Web site with the click of a button. The news organization can then review and manage the user-generated content for inclusion alongside its own content and even reach out to the videographer for additional information.
So far, major news organizations using the service include National Public Radio, The Washington Post, ABC News and the San Francisco Chronicle.