Launching the 2016 Storyology Festival
12 July 2016 at 11:02 am
Australia’s premier storytelling event, the Walkley Foundation’s Storyology festival, is back from 10 to 12 August in Sydney, along with satellite events for the public in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne.
At CNN, Clinch pioneered the use of social media to gather international news. Now he’s a global news editor at one of the world’s most innovative media companies.
Storyful sources social content for news organisations, verifies it, gets permission for it and manages the rights for billions of views on video platforms.
Here Storyology engages David Clinch in this special pre-festival Q and A.
Tell us a bit about you. How did you get to where you are today? What led you to become a storyteller?
I was born Irish so I suppose I was born a storyteller. I always had a dream that I wanted to be involved in something that would allow me to communicate and connect with people from all over the world and that is what led to me becoming a journalist and moving to the US.
Other storytellers I admire are Nick Kristof, James Joyce, Sam Beckett, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Marie Colvin.
I would advise my 15-year-old self to relax and enjoy every moment… not be in such a hurry to do everything so fast.
The time and place I am at my most creative is on my daily run… now if I could just remember all the great ideas I have while I am running!
Why do you feel social media has become such a powerful force in the news?
Social media has become such a powerful force in the news because there is always someone closer to the story! Social media finally allows us to hear from the people who actually witness news, in their own voices, and to see and hear what they see and hear. What they do is not journalism but it is powerful, raw content that gives journalists an opportunity to see so much more of a story… but also obliges journalists to add the vital elements of verification, context and meaning to the content that witnesses provide.
What’s the biggest mistake traditional media is making when trying to utilise new media?
The biggest mistake traditional media is making in trying to make use of social media content is not doing enough verification and not doing enough to establish context and rights / ownership for the content they use. One of the other mistakes traditional media, and social media platforms, are making is not finding better ways for witnesses to verify and give permission for their content in real time.
What are the biggest new opportunities for leveraging viral media?
Two of the biggest opportunities provided by verified, rights-cleared social media content, especially viral / trending content, are allowing news organisations to tell better stories with more points of view and to create authentic, watchable video content that can also drive significant monetised views.
If there was one key message you hope people take away from your talk at Storyology, what would it be?
The message that I would like the audience at Storyology to take away from my talk is that verification is journalism and that the skill set required for real time verification and rights-clearance for social media content is an essential skill set for anyone in journalism now and in the foreseeable future. Trying to working in journalism without this skill set or the help of professionals like Storyful, is dangerous and will also deny you access to amazing storytelling opportunities.
David Clinch will be a keynote speaker at the Walkley Foundation’s Storyology festival in Sydney, 10 to 13 August 2016. Visit here for more details.
Storyology ticket giveaway: thanks to the Walkley Foundation, Pro Bono Australia has two Storyology festival passes to give away before 15 July, 2016. To enter, answer “what’s your six word story?” and email to firstname.lastname@example.org