EE partners with The Guardian to launch user-generated content platform Guardianwitness
EE has today announced a partnership with Guardian News & Media to unveil a new online and mobile user-generated content platform, GuardianWitness. Powered by EE, GuardianWitness will allow the general public to submit their videos, pictures and text directly to the Guardian for inclusion on the platform, allowing anyone, from anywhere across the globe, the chance to have their say.
EE is the UK's first and only superfast 4G mobile network, making EE the perfect partner for this new platform - a digital network for a digital age, which echoes the Guardian's digital-first strategy and open approach to newsgathering. GuardianWitness will champion open journalism by encouraging the public to capture and share their content instantly via their mobiles and other internet connected devices, wherever they are. 4G from EE typically works up to five times faster than 3G, allowing 4G users to upload content quicker than ever before. The service is already live in 50 towns and cities across the UK.
The new platform is available via free iPhone or Android apps, or online via witness.guardian.co.uk. Selected submissions will go on to be featured on the Guardian website or in the Guardian or Observer newspapers, enabling users to help set the news agenda and become part of the Guardian's award-winning journalism, comment and reporting. Video submissions will also appear on a new GuardianWitness YouTube channel.
Spencer McHugh, Director of Brand, EE said: "Smartphones have changed the way in which news is covered and shared around the world as ground-breaking mobile technology breaks down the barriers between journalists and the public. As the first providers of superfast 4G in Britain, EE is uniquely placed to support this transformation in the way news is reported, consumed and shared. This revolutionary new platform from the Guardian recognises these developments, enabling users to film or photograph something and share it with the Guardian's editorial team in a matter of seconds, and EE is delighted to support the Guardian's approach to open journalism."
David Pemsel, Chief Commercial Officer, Guardian News & Media, said: "GuardianWitness, in partnership with EE, is a fantastic example of our open approach to working with brands to innovate and create new experiences for our digital audiences. It was only possible because of how closely we were able to collaborate with EE and MEC, and pulling together a cross-discipline team of brilliant people and technology from our in-house digital development department. GuardianWitness is world class product, fully integrated across our editorial platforms, that will engage and activate our audiences."
GuardianWitness content will be open to all to browse and view but in order to contribute to the platform, users will need to create an account, either through their existing Guardian account or through their Facebook / Twitter profiles.
Further information about GuardianWitness is available at witness.guardian.co.uk. The free iPhone app is available at the iTunes Store and the free Android app is available at the Android Marketplace.
The GuardianWitness partnership was brokered by award-winning partnership marketing agency MEC Access, and will be supported by a Guardian cross-platform marketing campaign created by BBH. Marketing activity will include promotion across the Guardian's digital platforms, as well as in the Guardian and Observer newspapers, including some media first ad placements.
For more information on EE, please visit www.ee.co.uk
For further information, images or comment from an EE spokesperson, please contact the team at M&C Saatchi PR:
For further information or comment from Guardian News & Media, please contact the press office:
Hayley Dunlop: firstname.lastname@example.org / 020 3353 3818.
Notes to editors
In collaboration with n0tice and partners, GuardianWitness products were designed, built and developed by the Guardian's digital development department.
EE is the most advanced digital communications company in Britain, providing mobile and fixed-line services to 27 million customers, and is the first company in the UK to provide 4G mobile services alongside fixed-line fibre.
EE is the company that runs the Orange, T-Mobile and EE brands in the UK.
Its 4G service will cover more than half of the UK population by June and EE continues to improve the speed and reach of the UK's first 4G network. Its fibre service already covers 50% of the population.
EE's mobile service currently provides coverage to 99% of the population with 2G and 98% of the population with 3G.
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GuardianWitness is available to users via any mobile network will encourage user-content submissions in three ways:
- Assignments: Each week, Guardian editors will set users a range of GuardianWitness “assignments” from across the spectrum of the Guardian’s editorial output – including news, sport, culture and life and style. Assignments for launch include ‘tall buildings’, linked to a forthcoming Observer / RIBA discussion. Assignments will also take the form of exclusive competitions.
- Live news: Guardian and Observer editors and reporters will sometimes invite readers to contribute submissions to breaking news stories to help report the day’s events from all corners of the world. As well as being published on the GuardianWitness apps and website - and because GuardianWitness is deeply integrated into the Guardian's editorial tools - selected submissions for these categories will be picked by editors to also feature directly in news articles and liveblogs. Users will be alerted to news stories that are welcoming contributions with a GuardianWitness badge - for instance videos of the latest extreme weather event.
- Submit a story: Users will be encouraged to submit content or ideas about stories or topics that might be of interest to the Guardian. Content submitted to this "open" assignment will not necessarily be published on GuardianWitness, but suitable submissions will be flagged to our editorial team who may want to follow up on them for possible stories and features, or set up a new assignment based on the original submission.
For more information, visit: www.guardian.co.uk/gnm-press-office/guardianwitness-to-open-up-guardian-journalism-as-never-before
About Guardian News & Media
Guardian News & Media (GNM) publishes guardian.co.uk, the fourth largest newspaper website in the world, as well as guardiannews.com in the US. Since launching the US digital operation, US traffic now represents a third of the Guardian's digital audience, with US traffic exceeding 12.5m unique users in January 2013, maintaining its lead over BBC News and Reuters. The Guardian’s mobile site is the number 1 quality newspaper mobile site.
In the UK, GNM publishes the Guardian newspaper six days a week and the world's oldest Sunday newspaper, The Observer. The Guardian was first published in 1821 and in 2012 the Guardian's website was awarded the Website of the Year prize at the 2012 Online Media Awards. The Guardian was named the UK's most trusted newspaper in 2012 research by 'Conquest Research & Consultancy'.
GuardianWitness was developed using n0tice, a mobile publishing platform for community journalism. Approved submissions for GuardianWitness will therefore also appear on n0tice.com. The n0tice toolkit helps publishers, broadcasters, brands and developers give their users ways to see and share what’s happening nearby. Developed by Guardian Media Group, this mobile-first platform offers white-label solutions for collecting, managing, integrating, displaying and sharing geo-tagged text, photos and video submitted by users.
For more information about n0tice services for partners, visit http://n0tice.org/
MEC help their clients explore what’s possible, inspiring and guiding them to the optimum solution for their brands. Then they exploit it, delivering maximum value to them. Their services include: Media planning and buying ~ Digital media ~ Mobile ~ Search ~ Performance marketing ~ Social media ~ Analytics and Insight ~ Sport, Entertainment & Cause ~ Multi-cultural ~ Content ~ Retail ~ Integrated Planning. MEC’s 4,500 highly talented and motivated people work with domestic and international clients in 84 countries and are a founding partner of GroupM.
To find out more, go to www.mecglobal.co.uk