Digital Media Production

USC Annenberg Adopts Stroome for Collaborative Video Editing

Call it "crowd-clipping" or "WeTube." The University of Southern California (USC) Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism has launched a collaborative video editing Web site, named Stroome, after the Dutch word stromen for "flow." The site was developed by two former graduate students, Nonny de La Peña and Tom Grasty, who have turned around and licensed the product back to the university for use in USC classrooms; on Annenberg TV News; and on Neon Tommy, Annenberg's digital news site.

The site allows users to post videos, music, and photos and then cooperatively edit, share, and remix the contents. Users can also exchange comments, build communities, and find new collaborators.

According to the new company, the concept opens a wide range of possibilities for journalists, filmmakers, and musicians. "I can see a blogger using this--or a start up news operation. Or a legacy newsroom with budget cuts that can't afford high-end video editing software," Grasty said. "It's going to let people produce stories faster and less expensively, and it's collaborative. It doesn't matter if you're in the same state or even in the same country."

"It goes beyond YouTube, where you just upload. You build and remix on the Web site. It's a great step toward creation and production on the Web," said assistant journalism professor Robert Hernandez, who offered input during Stroome's development and is experimenting with using it in his Web journalism classes. "I can see a situation where there's a protest and five reporters are shooting different pieces of video and using different equipment to upload it to Stroome, and someone in the newsroom edits one piece together. You can even go so far as saying, 'Dear citizen, upload your clips here, and we can work it into our content.'"

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a writer who covers technology and business for a number of publications. Contact her at dian@dischaffhauser.com.

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