NEW YORK (AP) – A new study found out that YouTube is emerging as a major platform for news, one to which viewers increasingly turn for eyewitness videos in times of major events and natural disasters.
The Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism yesterday released its examination of 15 months of the most popular news videos on the Google Inc.-owned site. It found out that while viewership for TV news still easily outpaces those consuming news on YouTube, the video-sharing site is a growing digital environment where professional journalism mingles with citizen content.
“There’s a new form of video journalism on this platform,” said Amy Mitchell, deputy director of the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism. “It’s a form in which the relationship between news organizations and citizens is more dynamic and more multiverse than we’ve seen in most other platforms before.”
More than a third of the most watched videos came from citizens. Than more than half came from news organizations, but footage in those videos sometimes incorporated footage shot by YouTube users.
The Japanese earthquake and tsunami was the most viewed news event during the length of the study, which spanned January 2011 to March 2012. The top videos from Japan included footage from surveillance cameras, a news network, and a Japanese Coast Guard vessel – a typical variety of sources.
Such dramatic events were often among the most watched videos. Other popular news events included the Russian elections, unrest in the Middle East, the collapse of a fair stage in Indiana, and the crash of an Italian cruise ship.