Sky News to recruit citizen journalists for general election coverage

Sky News is planning to recruit ‘several hundred’citizen journalists to provide coverage of the next general election.

The rolling news channel hopes to expand its citizen journalism output with the help of City University.

The university is looking for one postgraduate student to fill a role working closely with Sky on the project.

The appointed candidate would select, mentor and monitor the citizen journalists as they write and record content for a dedicated website.

‘Sky want to experiment with the format,’explains Neil Thurman, senior lecturer in electronic publishing in the City University journalism department.

‘We’ve done a lot of research in user-generated content. They wanted to get input from the academic side, so we suggested they fund the PhD studentship.

‘It will be a series of blogs. Rather than having Sky News journalists blogging [about the election], they’ll aim to recruit a number of citizens who will blog as well.”

The ideal candidate will have a good knowledge of British politics, and an interest in the academic study of the project.

Thurman continued: ‘It is likely to be a recent graduate with a journalism or journalism-related degree. From our point of view, we want them to use the experience they have with Sky as the basis for some interesting research work on how mainstream news organisations interact with citizen journalism.”

Last month, rival broadcaster ITV launched their own dedicated citizen journalism website. ITV Uploaded invites viewers to send in content to be used in addition news reports on the day’s top stories.

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