Who is Glen Mulcahy? The Head of Innovation at RTÉ, a Mojo trainer or the founder of Mojocon?
The politically correct answer is Head of innovation at RTÉ, because this is my day job, where I’ve been working for 18 years. However, as a part of that job I’m a Mojo trainer and also the Mojocon founder.
You are one of the pioneers of mobile journalism around the world. From a technology point of view, when did you see Mobile Journalism was a real possibility?
I started experimenting with mobile back in 2007, with a Nokia N95 and that was the basic building block. But it wasn’t until 2010, with the iPhone 4, that it really started.
Mobile Journalism is a game changer in the news industry. It transforms specialists into multidisciplinary storytellers. How do journalists react to this situation?
You get two reactions. There are the ones that are very comfortable in their jobs and are used to work with two or three other staff members to help them make a story. So they hate the idea of being expected to shoot and edit for themselves.
But a growing number of journalists have realized that the news model, as we know it, is changing. They know that not many people sit and watch the six o’clock television news as they used to, and that that number will continue getting smaller and smaller. And those who are aware of the change, will learn the skills and perfect their own abilities to make themselves extremely desirable as employees.
How does the fact of recording with a mobile phone instead of using a broadcast camera influences a story? How does a smartphone help or limit a journalist?
There are two aspects: the technical and the aesthetic or psychological. The technical is that you can’t really zoom. The phone doesn’t give you the power to zoom that you get with a big broadcast camera. And the psychological impact of shooting with an iPhone, is that people aren’t intimidated at all. When you come in with a phone, with a small tripod and maybe one light, it’s much more discrete, it’s less intrusive, and people tend to be far more sincere and far more open as result.