Mobile reporting video filming smartphone

MojoConIrl is scheduled for March 2015.

Credit: Image by Mark Hakansson
Irish broadcaster RTÉ plans to host an event to share ideas and skills around mobile journalism next year, according to an announcement by innovation lead Glen Mulcahy yesterday.
MoJoConIrl, scheduled for March 2015, is intended to be an opportunity for mobile journalists who create content for a variety of platforms – including TV, radio, and print – to share their lessons and experience, Mulcahy told

"It would be an opportunity for people like that to come and hear what other people are doing," he said, "what trouble they have had, and to share work flows or strategies for how they approach this content production model."

The idea came from his experience in the field over the last three years, noticing that while there has been a lot of interest, there have not been any opportunities for mobile journalists to discuss the area exclusively.

"There's never been a kind of cohesive strategy," he said, "or a place for all the different people that are interested to bang their heads together and create that environment that will spawn innovation and create some really interesting projects."

MoJoConIrl will be a two-day event, with sessions discussing key areas in the field followed by masterclasses and workshops on the second day.

The sessions will focus on the hot topics in mobile journalism, including technology and storytelling, as Mulcahy said technology is a subject many people contact him about for advice.

Key players like Sky News, NRK, the BBC and Al Jazeera have been leading the industry, he said, and he hopes this will be a chance for them to share their work and stories.

"It will be an opportunity to hear what the people in the industry are doing," he said. "Not all just broadcast either, I'm looking for newspapers and radio stations who are pioneers in this space to talk about their strategies as well."

Storytelling will play a major role at MoJoConIrl, Mulcahy said, as there is a lot of room for exposure and development in this field.

The first day's "Story" session will look at different forms of storytelling – not just created using mobile devices, but optimised for consumption on mobile devices as well.

The work of platforms like Shorthand, Steller, and Storehouse represents a "huge potential area for growth" in terms of consuming stories on mobile, he said, combining text and multimedia in an accessible format.

On the second day, Mulcahy highlighted the iPhone film-making workshop, to be led by award-winning film makers, and the iPhoneography session, headed by one of "the most prolific iPhoneographers on social media", although he was not yet able to name confirmed speakers for the event.

The use of mobile tools by community projects and the potential of mobile for user-generated content was also a key area to explore, he said.

"I've lined up two really interesting speakers who have made inroads in developing communities of storytellers," said Mulcahy, "by going into a community and training them on the principles of mobile production.

"One of them contacted me last week to say that he secured a really big project which I think will be a fascinating case study," in terms of helping communities to tell their own stories by providing training and sharing knowledge, he said.

MoJoConIrl is also aimed at media students and members of the public who are involved in community activities, who may be able to take advantage of the lessons learned.

"There's an opportunity to migrate from the traditional photocopied newsletter to actually doing a very simple website – with simple video stories on it – in communities," he said.

Mulcahy also hopes hardware manufacturers will be present to show delegates what equipment may be useful in the field.

"You'd be able to do a training session that will get you all fired up," he said, "and hopefully by the end of the second day when you walk away, you will be a fully-kitted 'mo-jo' ready to hit the ground and ready to start storytelling."

A full list of the sessions and workshops scheduled at the moment can be found on Mulcahy's blog. Tickets will go on sale in October.

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