The View gets top honours in Batten awards'Groundbreaking interactive video site the View has been awarded first place at the prestigious US Batten Awards for Innovation in Journalism.

The award is a major achievement for UK broadcast journalist David Dunkley Gyimah, and an endorsement of his dedication to exploiting the vast potential of video reporting on the web. is a quarterly interactive video magazine, presented in a familiar magazine layout with short video reports from a team of four 'solo jos' or 'backpack' journalists working in the UK, US and South Africa.

The project has been a labour of love for Mr Gyimah, a non-commercial project driven by his frustration that there is little creativity and innovation in broadcasting. He feels the rigid conventions of the industry have made it very resistant to change - change that is inevitable and unstoppable as media transforms for the digital age.

"We need to shake up this industry, and this award demonstrates that there is an alternative," he told

"If the View had eight multiskilled reporters with laptops and cameras, what we'd be able to achieve would be phenomenal."

Broadband has enabled video journalists to fully explore online video. As connection speeds have increased, producers have been able to publish longer, better quality clips to a wider audience.

Media giraffe

My Gyimah was called a 'media giraffe' by the judges; his work stands out above the rest because he has been prepared to take a risk.

"It's an aggressive, opinionated style of video but it's hip. We take a stand but are objective as well," he said.

"Our remit was innovation and we've revelled in it."

Presenting video on the internet also provides an element of control that media consumers now expect. This engagement with new forms of media defines this new digital generation, whether users are choosing to build custom news packages from their preferred sources or want to actively contribute to the news coverage.

This is a space that Mr Gyimah calls the 'outernet' - an outward-looking public space that oligarchic traditional media is struggling to understand.

"The job of an innovator is never an easy one. If the founding fathers are doing it one way then we will go the other way and see what happens.

"You have to work the industry for a long while, but at some point it breaks."

The award was presented on Monday night at the Washington's National Press Club.

Other winners included for its Google map feature of local crime spots, and local newspaper site the Greensboro News & Record. The Record introduced a 'town square' initiative early this year that aims to provide a central point for community discussion and involvement.

• David Dunkley Gyimah will be speaking about at London's Apple Store in Regent Street at 7pm, 15 September.

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