AP Buys Stake in Mobile Streaming Video Startup Bambuser

    There aren’t too many Swedish startups you can say this about, but Bambuser changed and was changed by the Arab Spring. At launch, the mobile-to-live-video concept was pitched as a way to share your kid’s soccer game with the grandparents in real time, but as more and more activists and citizen journalists started using Bambuser to record the world around them, the Stockholm-based company became a crowdsourced media platform for newsworthy events.

    Late last week the AP announces it has bought a stake in Bambuser, the Stockholm-based mobile streaming video service. The numbers involved with the deal were not announced, but AP’s director of global video news, Sandy MacIntyre, will join Bambuser’s board as a non-executive director.

    This isn’t the first time the two companies have hooked up, last fall Bambuser cemented its relationship with the AP by giving users the option to make their videos freely available for the AP to use in broadcasts and their online news articles.

    “The evidence that UGC (user generated content) is set to grow in importance and volume is plain to see. Nearly a fifth of the world’s population has a smartphone and that is a phenomenal eyewitness resource that Bambuser makes technologically possible. It means that anyone can be one button click away from generating live news that will change the way the world receives the ‘first word’ of a story” Sandy MacIntyre

    Correctly sourcing user generated content is one of the biggest challenges facing newsrooms at the moment. For better or worse, the news cycle keeps spinning faster, and having access to on-the-scene video is going to make or break news organizations.