I am not ICT-crazy and even less an ICT-expert. But I can't help being in awe, when I bump into amazing technological inventions. Not only, because it's hard for me to imagine how anybody could ever invent such a thing, due to my lack of expertise in the area, but also, because I acknowledge the surprising possibilities the new invention offers to people.
One such invention I bumped into recently and made me investigate it deeper comes from the beautiful, mellow city of Helsinki. And it is called Scoopshot.
Basically Scoopshot is an application for your iPhone or Android you download for free from the App Store or Android Market and ta-daa! You can become a moneymaking mobile newsphotographer just like that! As long as you keep your eyes open and you happen to be in the right place at the right time.
Scoopshot is also a source of innumerable fresh photos for the media to use in a very easy, immediate and moderately priced way.
I must say Scoopshot is something of a revolution. And let me please explain you in more detail how it works, just as a means to ease my awe.
If you want to expand your life activities and decide to make some extra money and have fun (and you own a smartphone, of course) you go and download the app Scoopshot. It's all very simple to use. Wow, really!
So, you are walking about the city and you see something cool, exciting or shocking. You take your phone; you whip out Scoopshot, tap the lens logo and you shoot. Next, you set a price to your photo (something not too costly, keep it real!) and write down what makes your photo special. Then, you send by phone your photo to Scoopshot Store. For the next 48 hours, your photo will be available to any magazine or newspaper or television that uses Scoopshot as a provider of images. Once someone purchases your photo, you get a notification to your phone. When you download the app, you get a Scoopshot account from where it is simple to transfer to your bank account the money your photos have earned.
With one free download and a heap of curiosity and a playful mind, you become an amateur newsphotographer who can make money with his shots. That's pretty cool! There are people who have already made more than ten thousand euros!
Scoopshot sells your photo and gets a 30% commission. After 48 hours, the photo leaves the Scoopshot Store and is again your intellectual property, so no one can use it without your consent.
What comes to the media, Scoopshot offers a vibrant, fresh and inexhaustible mine of photographs and videos (you can also send videos!!), which up till Scoopshot's coming to life, was unthinkable. No newspaper has enough photographers to be in each of the places where something newsworthy is happening. And a newsphotographer, no matter how efficient and fast he is, has his human limits. He can't be in a thousand places at the same time! And things are going on non-stop all over the place!
So Scoopshot supplies the media with a flow of constant, unique and hyper local content for very low prices and at incredible speed. Scoopshot enables readers to participate in the making of the news, and thus to make a difference in their own community. The media can create Tasks to get local scoopshooters to the scene of the action, thus inviting the readers (most Scoopshot photographers are readers of papers obviously) to get involved. This is an unheard way to cover instant location-specific news, and to energize the community in the long run. How does this work? It's pretty simple.
Imagine you are a journalist in some paper and you are to do a thing on the terrible blizzard that is coming down right now somewhere up north and that is causing big traffic trouble. Well, you write down a task in Scoopshot saying you need a photo of the blizzard and the traffic jam happening in that certain place and you need it as fast as possible. Then you send the task. And all scoopshooters located nearby the place of the blizzard receive the message and can get into action. This is a true revolution!
Scoopshot was launched in Finland in February 2011. There are already (buckle up an hold tight to your armrests!): 71,000 registered 'scoopshooters' from 160 countries; 140,000 photos uploaded; 81,000 photos sold; 46 media partners. Scoopshot is live in Finland, Sweden, Netherlands, Denmark, Hong Kong, Mexico and Chile. Scoopshot won the GrandOne Best Mobile App, and earned a place at the Top 20 App by Flurry at SXSW. A lot of achievements in such a short time!
What leaves me breathless, is how the structures we have known for at least a hundred years are crumbling around us at astonishing speed. Things are not what they used to be, and lest you keep a most flexible mind, you will feel far too dizzy to handle what's going on around you and you will have to hide in your home, close your eyes, and pretend nothing's really happening.
Scoopshot uses crowdsourcing for expanding the possibilities of supplying the world with news. It blurs the frontiers between pros and amateurs, which at first sight can seem harmful to pros, but which better analyzed will probably just cause new vibrancy in the media and meaningful change in communities. There's room for us all and we all matter, even if small and unimportant. And things that used to be costly and complicated, even impossible, have become easy, low cost and possible with inventions like Scoopshot. The Internet has its scary side, but the quantity of never-before-dreamt doors it is opening is absolutely astonishing!
Ready to conquer new territories?