New ways you'll see the news

Posted Online: April 13, 2013, 9:20 am
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By Leslie Meredith
News as we know it is poised to change, and it's in the hands of smartphone users.

A couple weeks ago, the New York Times print edition ran a photo of New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez taken by sports photographer Nick Laham — on his iPhone and edited in Instagram.

Laham's photo was not the first time Instagram-edited photos have been used by news outlets, but it was one of the most prominently placed to date.

Laham shot a series of portraits in a bathroom. He didn't have much of a choice. "I wasn't given the option of studio or bathroom stall and decided on the latter," Laham wrote on his blog. "I joined the chain of photographers at 6 a.m. in the confines of the New York Yankees' spring training facility in Tampa, and took what space I could get and worked with it."

Sports coverage is not the only place you'll see Instagrammed photos. Seasoned photojournalist Ben Lowry used his iPhone and Instagram to cover turmoil in Libya last summer.

He wrote that using a phone rather than an intimidating DSLR camera allows him to get closer to subjects. He also believes that using Instagram gets more attention from viewers, making them feel as if they were looking at a friend's photos.

Filters also have come to Getty images, the professional choice for high-end photography. Percolator, a start-up that offers a social media publishing service for brands, recently announced a new service that lets its clients select Getty images, add their logo and apply filters from Aviary, the photo editing app that powers Twitter's in-app photo editor.

Watch for brands posting more filtered photos to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other networks which could spill over from advertisements to news photos.

But filters are just the beginning. We also can look forward to "moving pictures," a la Vine, Twitter's fledgling 6-second video app. The looping format can heighten emotion as viewers automatically see a snippet repeated over and over again.

For instance, the Michigan Wolverines, the only team in the NCAA Final Four that has a Vine, posted a video showing the team's triumphant return to Crisler Arena, trophy in hand.

Major League Baseball has also embraced Vine. For now, its videos are entertaining, such as showing what's inside a baseball, but once the season gets underway, you will likely see game highlights shown as Vines.

News agencies have so far been reluctant to use Vine. NBC and its affiliates around the country have posted a handful of Vines, mostly on lighter subjects such as cute animals and the weather.

CBS has an account, but is yet to use it. But a clip posted to Vine by NBC's New York affiliate covered a traffic accident in the micro-movie format.

Unlike with Instagram and other services with photo filters, Vine does not include filters or voiceover capabilities, which means an unedited view.

However, other video creation apps do, such as Funky, an app launched last month that lets users add several filters and commentate videos up to 30 seconds — about the length of a typical TV news brief.

With apps like Instagram, Vine and Funky, your news could soon look a lot more like you made it yourself, which may or may not be a good thing.
Ogden, Utah-based guides consumers by comparing products in the world of technology, including electronics, software and Web services. Have a question? Email Leslie Meredith at or follow her @lesliemeredith on Twitter.


Local events heading

  Today is Thursday, July 31, the 212th day of 2014. There are 153 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: A corps of surgeons now occupies the new hospital quarters at the Garrison Hospital on the Rock Island Arsenal. A fence has been installed to enclose the prison hospital.
1889 -- 125 years ago: B. Winter has let a contract to Christ Schreiner for a two story brick building with a double store front on the south side of 3rd Avenue just west of 17th Street. The estimated cost was $4,500.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Germany sent simultaneous ultimatums to Russia and France, demanding that Russia suspend mobilization within 12 hours and demanding that France inform Germany within 18 hours. In the case of war between Germany and Russia, France would remain neutral.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Civil service offices at the post office and the Rock Island Arsenal were swamped as more than 700 youths sought 15 machinist apprenticeships at the Arsenal.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Last night, American Legion Post 246 in Moline figuratively handed over the trousers to a female ex-Marine and petticoat rule began. Olga Swanson, of Moline, was installed as the first woman commander of the post .
1989 -- 25 years ago: The Illinois Quad City Civic Center captured the excitement and interest of a convention of auditorium managers this weekend in Reno, Nev. Bill Adams, civic center authority chairman, said the 10,000-seat arena planned for downtown Moline has caught the eye of construction firms, suppliers, management teams and concession groups.

(More History)