Sunday, February 22, 2009

This citizen journalism firm makes big deals

Cell Journalist is a media platform founded less than two years back by Parker Polidor, 32, and Colin Polidor, 29, in Nashville, Tennessee.

When it receives content from users of cell phones, the company's software "allows this breaking news content to be online or on-air in as little as 90 seconds."

But what makes Cell Journalist truly stand out is its recent commercial success.
In December, the company forged an agreement with media industry leader E.W. Scripps, extending its already existing contract with the Knoxville News Sentinel and Memphis Commercial Appeal to all 15 of Scripps' newspapers across nine states.

"The deal with Scripps shows that local media outlets are very serious about user-generated content," Parker Polidor says.

The company has similar deals with major players such as Raycom, Gatehouse Media, Young Broadcasting, Dispatch Publishing and Media General (representing more than 60 TV stations and 15 newspapers between them). While no current agreement exists with powerhouse Gannett Co., the Polidors remain optimistic about future deals.

"Currently, we are working with 40 media properties and expect this number to more than double in the next twelve months," Polidor says.

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