Mumbai: Yahoo! Inc, is partnering news and information company Reuters to create a news contribution system called "You Witness." The internet media company has invited the public to contribute eyewitness photos and videos of news events, in the latest move to turn spectators into on-the-spot journalists.
Reuters will edit and distribute selected photos to other news outlets.
Yahoo!, which currently offers news from other professional news agencies, including the Associated Press, CNN and Reuters on Yahoo! News, will run selected images contributed by users as part of topical packages.
With hundreds of millions of internet-enabled camera phones in circulation, people who happen to be in the wrong place at the right time to capture history, would are able to take high-quality photos and videos and mail it to the websites, Yahoo! said.
"There is already a lot of quality amateur journalism being created by our users," said Scott Moore, head of news and information at Yahoo! Media Group. " Yahoo! needed a more efficient process for soliciting and publishing user-contributed photos and video," he added.
Sunnyvale, California-based Yahoo aims to expand the "You Witness" system to wider areas like sports, entertainment and other sections of its site, a spokesman said.
Yahoo! also owns the photo-sharing site Flickr, where amateur photographers often post photos of breaking news events online.
Yahoo! and Reuters are currently working on a compensation plan for contributors, the two companies said.
"We are looking at the possibility of creating photo wires and archives to allow people to be compensated for their work and for the images they are able to capture," said Chris Ahearn, president of Reuters Media. Reuters already pays the public for hot images and that will continue, Ahearn said.
Yahoo! News claims to be the No. 1 online news site with 34 million readers in the US in October, according to comScore Networks data.
Yahoo! is weighing plans to expand the programme to international sites.