According to the latest studies, YouTube has become a reliable news source for millions of internet users. Researchers have concluded that while television is still the top leader of the mass-media, YouTube is slowly but surely becoming an online platform for professional journalism.
On Monday, the Pew Research Center released a the results of the Project for Excellence in Journalism, which consisted in the examination of the most popular news videos on YouTube on a period of 15 months. At the end of this period of time, the researchers have concluded that the website owned by the Google Inc. is gaining audience when it comes to professional journalism videos.
Amy Mitchell, deputy director of the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism, believes that YouTube has allowed the development of a new form of journalism, in which the connection between the public and the news organizations is “more dynamic and more multiverse than we’ve seen in most other platforms before.”
Over 30 percent of the most watched videos were uploaded by citizens. More than half came from news organizations, and, of them, some incorporated videos filmed by citizens.
While Mitchell explains the benefits of YouTube as a news source, outlining that “many of the most viewed stories that we’re looking at here have real powerful imagery around them”, she also warns that the checking of the reliability through sources is still blurry. Some videos go viral without the information being verified.
“This is a young platform and there’re certainly aspects of this interplay and the way information is going to flow that’s still being worked out,” concluded Mitchell.