New reporter network aims to boost local output for UK publishers

A new platform for video reporters is aiming to champion local, community-based journalism by creating a network of freelance multimedia journalists around the UK.

WinkBall, which launched recently, hopes to shine a light on positive stories that often take a backseat to national news.

“Our journalists will be reporting on the positive, local news that we don’t often get a chance to hear about,” said Dr James Ohene-Djan, co-founder of WinkBall and lecturer in computing at Goldsmiths.

“We will be covering a range of events taking place in local communities – anything from the launch of an innovative business to the review of a new theatre production.”

WinkBall previously offered video coverage of events around the UK, but transformed into the reporter network as a way to encourage more local news to be heard around the country. It hopes to “change attitudes to the way we produce and consume media in the UK”.

Ohene-Djan hopes the network will help more young people to get into reporting – anyone who has a background in video, presenting or editing is eligible to become a member of WinkBall.

“We want journalists to be encouraged to produce more local stories, and we believe this model will enable news organisations to publish them on their news bulletins.”

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