Why I Love GoPro

by William Fisher

No, not just for mind-blowing footage like this. (Thank you, GoPro Original Productions.) And not just because founder Nick Woodman once raised money for the company by selling bead and shell belts out of his VW van.

I love GoPro because their cameras embody Woodman’s uncompromising vision of providing amateurs with the best tools available to shoot extreme action video. Because to him almost any aspiring videographer can now afford to, well, “go pro.”

But skateboarders, skydivers and surfers aren’t the only ones who have benefitted. Yesterday’s Mashable story about casual sexual harassment on the streets of New York, created with a GoPro camera hidden in a backpack, shows how a light, rugged camera can serve a more high-minded purpose.

GoPro’s technological innovation levels the playing field by enabling anyone – whether an adrenaline junkie or a civic-minded pedestrian – to tell a story with images.

At YuVue we’re expecting to get our share of video contributions from both. That’s why I love GoPro!

If you haven’t seen the video yet, here it is:


Help Our Kickstarter Campaign: Send Us a Selfie!

Thanks for being part of the YuVue global community of citizen journalists!

We’d like to invite you to join our Kickstarter campaign team by helping with our campaign video, which will feature citizen journalists from around the world.

Just send us two video selfies and you’ll be one of the first to get the app!

The YuVue app will allow you to sell your photos and videos. We’re an online marketplace for professional and crowdsourced images that connects photographers and videographers from around the globe with broadcasters, print and web publishers.

We’ll launch on Kickstarter in early November as part of a campaign to build a base of citizen journalists like you. Watch for mentions on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Instagram and Google+, and please “like” and “share” to help us spread the word!

Here’s how to do it:

Use your smartphone to create 2 short video selfies – shot separately, and preferably outdoors with your city or hometown in the background.  Hold your phone horizontally – at eye level and at arms length – and record yourself saying:

  1. The name of your city or town in English – e.g. “Chicago!” and
  2. “YuVue” (pronounced “YOU View”)

Let the camera run for 4-5 seconds before and after you speak.  And please speak loudly and clearly – even better if you smile!

Then email the two videos to us at info@yuvue.com.

Here are links to examples of each:



At the end of our Kickstarter campaign, you’ll be sent a link to allow you to download the YuVue app before it’s available to the public.

Thanks for your support!

Hong Kong’s Citizen Journalists

by William Fisher

For those of us who have lived in Hong Kong, the Occupy Central movement is a very personal matter. Even more so if you lived through the Tiananmen Square protests. I remember my wife – then an editor at Magnum Photos – going back and forth to the airport at dawn, with the very important job of shepherding photographers and their film in and out of the country.

Then as now, the world is watching. But what we’re watching today isn’t necessarily coverage by Stuart Franklin or CNN. Mainly we’re looking at photos and videos taken on smartphones by the very student protesters who have brought the city to a standstill.

And the images are all the more powerful precisely because they’re the work of ordinary Hong Kong citizens.

Hong Kong protest near Wan Chai" by Citobun - Own work. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Hong Kong protest near Wan Chai” by Citobun – Own work. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Times have changed, and so have the obstacles that photographers and videographers face. Technology in general and smartphones in particular have empowered a new generation. But recent revelations about malicious apps intended to monitor Hong Kong’s smartphone-wielding protesters show that today’s citizen journalists face new obstacles of increased sophistication.

Who is responsible for the malicious apps? We may not know for sure, but of course we have a good idea.

For every such dirty tech trick, there are tech counter-measures. Mobile messaging services and apps like Firechat (which uses a phone’s radio and Bluetooth communication capabilities to create a network) have allowed protesters and civilian witnesses to skirt Internet disruptions and saturated cells.

YuVue aims to be part of the solution. Our app and Web platform connect professionals and citizen journalists directly with the media outlets and Web publishers who value their work.

It’s the present-day version of a pre-dawn ride to the airport.