What role is MOJO playing in contemporary journalism?

In the last couple of weeks, a video of two distressed Syrian children after the loss of their brother has made the rounds in social media — drawing attention to the fight in Syria and putting faces behind the numbers effected by the war. This footage was recorded not long after a series of bombs in the area by a local journalist, capturing the tragedy and raw emotion of war.

Two Syrian children weep after learning of their brother’s death after a bombing in Syria — Source: Facebook (NowThis)

MOJO, or mobile journalism, has become a significant part of newsgathering for media corporations. As the capabilities of phones develop, and quick, reliable internet becomes more accessible, journalism has become a more reliant upon these technological advances for speedy reporting from the road.

The popularity of smartphones has led to swift advancement of the technology. The better smartphones become, the more valuable they become to journalists who can use them their own version of a Swiss army knife. In a device the size of one’s palm, journalists can now carry a camera, recording device, research resource, and mini-computer all at once, and also use it to act as a calendar and contact book, as well as maintain a presence on social media — essentially everything a journalist needs in their job.

Technology journalist David McClelland explains how an iPhone can act as an all-you-could -need resource for journalists Source: YouTube (David McClelland)

As globalisation continues to make the world more connected, citizens have greater access to and interest in global events and MOJO helps the public stay informed. Major news events like acts of terrorism can be quickly reported without the need to get equipment to the scene. Journalists can make use of their smartphones to report events on the scene and get the information to the public as soon as possible.

The ability to get news out, especially in video form, has greatly improved over the last couple of years. Twitter continues to be the first place news is published, and the ability to add gifs or videos has enhanced that, and Facebook Live has allowed people to broadcast live via their social media accounts. The smartphone has empowered people everywhere to embrace MOJO and become journalists themselves.