Mobile journalism, also known as mojo, is a newer form of journalism where freelance reporters use portable electronic devices, such as digital cameras, laptops, and smartphones, to share news from his or her community. It is an easy and effective way to spread news to one’s community and it uses much less equipment than a typical journalist would need when reporting a news story.
If one is interested in becoming a mobile journalist, he or she must be familiar with SCRAP. It is similar to the 5 W’s for journalists (who, what, where, when, and why). SCRAP stands for stories, character, revolution, actuality and production. According to the Huffington Post, “whatever the genre or platform, the smart operator working in a cross-screen digital content ecosphere will need smart skills that include storytelling, program making and an awareness of social media. Toss in the requisite tools, and you’re on your way.” It is still exceedingly important to know the basic tools and programs in order to be a successful mobile journalist.
According to Catalina Albeanu, Facebook Live and Periscope are going to become gateway sites for mobile journalism. Here are some basic tips on how to get started with mobile journalism: put your phone in airplane mode so that calls, texts, and other notifications do not disturb the reporting, clean your lens, hold the phone horizontally with the home button on the right hand side, to ensure that the recording is not filmed upside down, and lastly, make sure your phone is stable. Before you start a live stream, it is important to know that once you start streaming, you can not take it back, so make sure that you are aware of what you are going to say.
There are many pros and cons to mobile journalism, here is a list of a few benefits and issues that come with mobile journalism, according to GGIBIT’s Blog. The pros of mobile journalism are that it allows journalists to be flexible, they do not have to carry around large, expensive equipment, the audio is great quality, students know how to use the equipment software more so than other forms of technology, and it saves money. The cons of mobile journalism according to the same blog are that “the transmission of information is limited by infrastructure and the technology hasn’t necessarily caught up to people’s desires.” There are many pros to mobile journalism, but it is important to be aware of the technical difficulties that may occur when becoming a mobile journalist.