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Mobile and Ubiquitous Media

Critical and International Perspectives

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Edited By Michael S. Daubs and Vincent R. Manzerolle

What does the phrase "ubiquitous media" actually mean? Individual definitions are just as varied and ubiquitous as the media to which they refer. As a result, there is to date no large-scale theoretical framework through which we can understand the term. The goal of this volume is to provide a diverse set of critical, theoretical, and international approaches useful to those looking for a more diverse and nuanced understanding of what ubiquitous media means analytically.

In contrast to other existing texts on mobile media, these contributions on mobile media are contextualised within a larger discussion on the nature and history of ubiquitous media. Other sections of this edited volume are dedicated to historical perspectives on ubiquitous media, ubiquitous media and visual culture, the role of ubiquitous media in surveillance, the political economy of ubiquitous media, and the way a ubiquitous media environment affects communities, spaces, and places throughout the world.

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Chapter Thirteen: Towards Journalism Everywhere: The New Opportunities and Challenges of Real-Time News Streams in Finland (Turo Uskali)

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chapter thirteen

Towards Journalism Everywhere

The New Opportunities and Challenges of Real-Time News Streams in Finland

Turo Uskali

Introduction1

In early May, 2016 the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) set up a web camera on a cliff on the shore of Finland’s largest body of fresh water, Lake Saimaa. The foot of the cliff is known to be a good location to see the Saimaa ringed seals, an endangered species which live only in this particular lake system. Few Finns had, prior to this webcast, ever seen a Saimaa ringed seal in the wild.

Most of the time, the live video-feed showed no activity on the rocks at the foot of the cliff. Nevertheless, soon after the webcast started, a Saimaa ringed seal, later called Pullervo, did choose the location as his sunbathing spot. Aside from a couple visits from a female called Siiri, the web-stream was relatively uneventful. However, during the month of May 2016, Finns viewed the Pullervo live-video stream over two million times for an average of 28 minutes (Helsingin Sanomat 2016). In sum, the WWF’s live-webcasting proved to be a surprisingly popular form of entertainment for the 5.5 million Finns.

Similar live webcasts focusing on wildlife, especially nesting eagles or other big birds, have been available since 2009, when live-mobile-video services such as Bambuser, Livestream, and U-Stream started. The initial offerings were intermittent. Now new actors in the industry, like Animal Planet, regularly...

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