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SXSW Interactive 2015

Metadata for Good? Trust & Context in Online Media

With 100+ hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute, online videos have changed everything about how we get our information and entertainment. But for all those videos to make a real impact in news, human rights, and legal contexts we need the increasingly rapid ability to tell which videos are real and which ones aren’t giving us the whole story. Most of what we hear about metadata these days involves NSA spying, but it may be a valuable asset in solving the trust problem, allowing users to establish authorship, prove authenticity, add context, and reach the right audiences. So how can we address the issues of privacy and user control while still separating the real from the fake? The answer could help online video for news, truth, and justice finally reach its full potential. The panelists will combine their expertise in news and human rights to to kick off a discussion of metadata, verification, online media, and rights.

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  1. How trustworthy is online video? With more and more video being uploaded every day from more diverse sources, how much of it is reliable enough to be used as news or evidence?
  2. How is citizen video being used in news, human rights, and legal contexts, and what needs to happen for all of that video to have the full impact?
  3. How can users create, understand, control, share, and protect the metadata associated with their own media?
  4. How can metadata or other approaches help content reach the right audiences, whether it's breaking news or long-term justice contexts?
  5. How can activists or citizen journalists have their online media trusted and turned into evidence not just as breaking news, but in human rights and legal contexts, even years down the road?


  • Morgan Hargrave, Coordinator, Systems Change, WITNESS
  • Malachy Browne, News Editor, Storyful
  • Steve Nicholls, YouTube News, YouTube


Morgan Hargrave, Coordinator, Systems Change, WITNESS

Meta Information:

  • Tags: media, video
  • Event: Interactive
  • Format: Panel
  • Track: Content and Distribution
  • Track 2
  • Level: Advanced
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