Google is trialling a new app that’ll enable anyone to become a local reporter.
The Bulletin app is designed for people who want to tell “hyperlocal” stories about their community that aren’t being told through traditional media outlets.
Users will be able to create stories using photos, videos and text and the result is published straight to the web.
The lightweight app is designed to be easy as possible to use, with Google advertising it as an opportunity to become “the voice of your community.”
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Stories can be discoverable within the app and results will appear in Google search. The media rich articles can also be published to social media and shared via email and messaging apps.
Bulletin, which could alert users to roadworks, upcoming events or just good news stories that might be unheralded by their local media outlets.
The app is being trialled in Oakland, California and Nashville, Tennessee in the United States and interested parties can sign up for early access.
It’s currently available on Android only with an iOS release coming in the next few weeks.
Potential for misuse?
Google has undoubtedly played a huge role in creating a global society, so it’s interesting to see the firm taking more interest in local communities.
The app also comes as local media comes under increasing threat from ownership concentration and shrinking budgets.
However, in the era of fake news and misinformation being maliciously spread through the internet, Google’s decision is bound to come under scrutiny.
Journalists undergo years of training in order to responsibly report the news. Google’s intentions seem pure, but we can envision there being some serious misuse of this application.
What do you think of Google’s Bulletin idea? Drop us a line @TrustedReviews on Twitter.