The Verification Handbook from the European Centre of Journalism is a new resource for journalists and aid responders, which provides tools, techniques and step-by-step guidelines for using user-generated content (UGC) during emergencies.
The announcement states:
“In a crisis situation, social media and social networks are overloaded with situation updates, calls for relief, reports of new developments, and rescue information. Reporting the right information is often critical in shaping responses from the public and relief workers; it can literally be a matter of life or death.”
The Verification Handbook is written by journalists from news organisations from around the world, including the BBC, Storyful, ABC, and Digital First Media. The editor is Canadian journalist Craig Silverman who wrote Regret the Error for the Poynter Institute.
The handbook is for journalists and aid responders to provide practical advice on how newsrooms can find, understand, validate and use information, photos and videos shared by the public (‘the crowd’). However, I believe it will also be useful for public relations, reputation management and corporate communications professionals, especially for issues management and crisis communications.
The Verification Handbook will be published on Tuesday, January 28, 2014 as a free online Kindle and PDF book. There will be a print book available to order shortly afterwards.
The handbook will be freely available online to anyone interested in brushing up on their verification skills beginning Tuesday the 28th of January 2014. A print version will also be available to order soon afterwards.
This EJC initiative is financed by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, as well as by the African Media Initiative (AMI). The project is endorsed by several international organisations including the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), the United Nations Alliance of Civilisations (UNAOC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).