Al Jazeera English will soon be launching a new television show called The Stream which will closely integrate online communities and the news by harnessing social networking in both the sourcing and reporting of stories, according to a report from Wired.
During the course of the show, they’ll read tweets and updates (and display them on-screen) as they come up. They’re also planning on interviewing guests via Skype — connection quality issues be damned. In a screen test we saw at the Wired offices recently, the hosts bantered with each other and with in-studio guests, but also responded to viewers’ @ replies, played YouTube videos, and Skyped with social media mavens around the world. The studio was liberally sprinkled with monitors, and the show frequently cut to fullscreen tweets while the hosts read the 140-character updates out loud, hash tags and all.
According to this Twitter account, The Stream, understood to be due for launch in May, will be “a web community and daily television show powered by social media and citizen journalism”.
Outlining the plan on Facebook AJEstream says it will initially cover about five stories a day, based on the work of journalists and producers trawling the web and also by using an element of crowdsourcing opinion online on what topics interest people the most.