2
0
1
9

A new dawn for 3D tech in journalism

“In 2019, we’ll see great improvements in mobile 3D volumetric capture, a technology that enables the digitization of three-dimensional space.”

In the wake of the great 2017 virtual reality bubble — and its subsequent burst — several things have happened. While augmented reality (AR) has taken over much of the momentum and attention, we’re seeing broader changes in the way we create and distribute 3D content.

News outlets like The New York Times and Quartz are already combining AR with journalism to create augmented reality features, providing readers with new understanding and interaction with their journalism through 3D models.

One recent example of 3D and journalism combining to make something greater than the sum of its parts came as Norway experienced a collective information vacuum. A major and seemingly impossible collision between a battleship and an oil tanker led to a media frenzy — but mostly unanswered questions as the Norwegian navy largely kept silent.

But by combining old-school journalism with open data and off-the-shelf 3D models, several Norwegian media outlets were able to piece together an advanced recreation. Both virtual 3D-models and real-life 3D-printed models helped explain the “impossible” scenario of the collision to the public.

Images from an interactive feature by VG and 3D printed model used by NRK in news broadcasts.

Simultaneously, we saw how improved graphics capabilities at reduced cost make gaming-level graphics available to journalists — creating tremendous possibilities for explaining current affairs visually. In the U.S., The Weather Channel is pushing boundaries by using the Unreal Engine that also powers Fortnite to create explainers:

In 2019, we’ll see great improvements in mobile 3D volumetric capture, a technology that enables the digitization of three-dimensional space. While it’s been possible to capture 3D space with drones and phones for some time, quality has been a limiting factor.

Now, the rear-facing cameras on new phones will make 3D accessible to smaller newsrooms and independent journalists too. LG’s recent patent for a phone featuring 16 camera lenses, with 3D movies and images touted as a central feature, is a sign of what we can expect in the near future. All these new phone cameras will make it easier to create models that can enhance our journalism.

The first of many gaps between different mobile 3D technologies are now being closed. Currently, we’re seeing advanced camera technology and depth sensing on new phones with two or more cameras. Now, through Facebook’s recent adoption of 3D images and services like Depthy, easy-to-create 3D content has the potential for broader distribution.

As mobile 3D technology matures, it will undoubtedly provide new possibilities and pitfalls for media and journalism — and find its way into even the smallest newsrooms.

Ståle Grut is a journalist and strategic advisor at NRKbeta.

Angilee Shah   The year news orgs say “yes” to real leaders

Gabriel Snyder   Journalism doesn’t fit well in a funnel

Bill Grueskin   Toward a symphony model for local news

Heather Bryant   We are responsible for how we use our power

Justin Kosslyn   Text hits a tipping point

Patrick Butler   Measuring impact will increase audience trust

Rachel Glickhouse   Newsrooms will prioritize audience needs

Jake Shapiro   Podcasting is media’s slow food movement

Stephanie Edgerly   It’s time to understand the un-audience

Borja Bergareche Sainz de los Terreros   Entering a more balanced era

Dave Burdick   Seeing our blind spots

Jean Friedman Rudovsky   Cross-newsroom collaborations strengthen communities

Simon Rogers   Data journalism becomes a global field

Peter Cunliffe-Jones   The focus of misinformation debates shifts south

Jeremy Gilbert   AI finally becomes helpful

Logan Molyneux   Seeing social media for what it is

Lauren Katz   Community becomes a core newsroom value

Kjerstin Thorson   Time to get mad about information inequality (again)

Marie Shanahan   Newsrooms take the comments sections back from platforms

P. Kim Bui   The misfits become the bosses

Bill Adair   Another year fighting Trump’s falsehoods

Thomas Hanitzsch   The rise of tribal journalism

Mike Isaac   The old exit doors for digital media companies are closing

Amy King   We should listen to the kids (especially on Instagram)

Dan Shanoff   Bet on sports gambling

Andrew Ramsammy   The great re-pivot to audio

Sue Robinson   Reporters go on the offensive

Candis Callison   Learn from Indigenous journalists on covering climate change

Joshua Darr   The nationalization of political news will accelerate

Ståle Grut   A new dawn for 3D tech in journalism

Nisha Chittal   The homepage makes a comeback

Frank Chimero   Leave the phone at home and put news on your wrist

Francesco Marconi   The year of iterative journalism

Adam Smith   Platforms will have to help rebuild trust in news

Libby Bawcombe   Haikus of the news

Rodney Gibbs   A bright — and young — year for audio

Tim Carmody   Unlocking the commons

Talia Stroud   Engaging people across lines of difference

Renée Kaplan   Our future could lie within our own organizations

Glyn Mottershead and Martin Chorley   When a tech company pulls the plug on your story

Kyra Darnton   A shift to depth in video

Joel Konopo   Influencers become the new liberated power in Africa

Mariana Moura Santos   From pageviews to impact

Efrat Nechushtai   Journalism wants to be your friend, not your teacher

Elizabeth Jensen   Going where the Acela can’t take you

Sue Cross   Return of the water cooler

Jesse Brown   Canada’s subsidy for news backfires

Rachel Davis Mersey   Local news goes minimalist

Hossein Derakhshan   The news is dying, but journalism will not — and should not

Joe Amditis   Give the audience a seat at the table

Heather Chaplin   Agree we’re partisan — for the democratic system

Colleen Shalby   Representation becomes more than a talking point

Sarah Alvarez   Simplify and redistribute

Greg Emerson   Power to the user

Andrew Donohue   Voting rights becomes the new climate change

Dheerja Kaur   A focus on problems, not platforms

Jim Friedlich   Meet Citizen Kane 2.0

Linda Solomon Wood   The year of the climate reporter

Pablo Boczkowski   Reimagining the media for post-institutional times

Cristi Hegranes   A year to invest in the security of local journalists

Steve Grove   A reckoning for tech’s work with news

Jeff Chin   We detox from Chartbeat

Johannes Klingebiel   We all grow hooves

Monique Judge   Committing to the truth, calling out lies

Jesse Holcomb   We’ll get better at making the case for local journalism

Ben Werdmuller   The platform tide is turning

Angèle Christin   Algorithms and the reflexive turn

Mandy Velez   Putting the social back in social media

james Wahutu   Think 2018 was bad? Wait until you see 2019

Seth C. Lewis   The gap between journalism and research is too wide

Matt Karolian   Publishers come to terms with being Facebook’s enablers

Celeste LeCompte   Local news needs local conversation to survive

Darryl Holliday   Let’s talk about power (yours)

A.J. Bauer   The coming splintering of conservative media

Errin Haines   Say it with me: Racism

Ariel Zirulnick   Participation gets professional

Soo Oh   Just showing our work isn’t enough

Tamar Charney   Seriously: What do you do for people?

John Garrett   You can’t raise prices forever

Becca Aaronson   From bridge roles to product thinkers

Don Day   Timewalls and other reader revenue experiments

Rasmus Kleis Nielsen   A long, slow slog, with no one coming to the rescue

Rick Berke   The year of loyalty

Alexandra Borchardt   Newsrooms need to build trust with their journalists, not just the audience

Zizi Papacharissi   Old interface, say hello to the new interface

Kate Myers   Journalism continues to be bad for democracy

Whitney Phillips   Our information systems aren’t broken — they’re working as intended

Mario García   The rise of content “pilots”

Kristen Muller   Local news fails — in a good way

Winny de Jong   Data journalism goes undercover

Jack Riley   Facebook refugees, from ad revenue to news habits

Gideon Lichfield   Goodbye attention economy, we’ll miss you

Josh Schwartz   A pullback from platforms and a focus on product

Elite Truong   What do we owe the next generation?

Zainab Khan   Publishers whose products can stand up to social media giants will win

Kevin Douglas Grant   A year to embrace journalism as public service

Sarah Stonbely   Mapping the local news ecosystem — with scale but detail

Elisabeth Goodridge   Yes, they signed up — but our job’s not over

Masuma Ahuja   Make foreign coverage less foreign

Emma Carew Grovum   The year of the loyal reader

Amy Schmitz Weiss   Local news isn’t where you thought it was

Mike Caulfield   Ditch the media literacy cynicism and get to work

Elizabeth Bramson-Boudreau   A more sincere definition of “community”

Peter Bale   Venture capital runs out of patience

Ben Smith   The pendulum starts to swing back

Mat Yurow   Content competition from the tech companies

Callie Schweitzer   The rise of the conveners

Robin Kwong   Tech shouldn’t be the only field pollinating “news nerds”

Ernst-Jan Pfauth   Readers are only getting started

Axie Navas   The traffic hunt, CMS battle, and magazine identity crises loom

Nicholas Jackson   More transparency around newsroom decisions

Pia Frey   You can’t solve a crisis without treating it as a crisis

M. Scott Havens   Time to swing for the fences

Christa Scharfenberg and Vickie Baranetsky   The year of the lawsuit

Shannon McGregor   More bogus embedded tweets in our stories

Almar Latour   Reported facts, weaponized in service of action

Matt Skibinski   Quality and reliability are the new currencies for publishers

Shalabh Upadhyay   A culture clash on India’s growing Internet

Seema Yasmin   We will create our own spaces

Eric Ulken   The year you actually start to like your CMS

Julia Rubin   Meeting people where they are

Cherian George   Fake news wins in Asia

Ruth Palmer and Benjamin Toff   From news fatigue to news avoidance

Steve Myers   From trying to cover it all to covering what matters

Umbreen Bhatti   The story doesn’t end for the people we quote

Victor Pickard   We will finally confront systemic market failure

Laura E. Davis   More access, but not that kind

Kawandeep Virdee   Media wants to take care of you

Steve Henn   Smart speakers get smarter

Rubina Madan Fillion   Fighting the reality of deepfakes

Jonathan Stray   More algorithmic accountability reporting, and a lot of it will be meh

Brian Moritz   The subscription-pocalypse is about to hit

Zuzanna Ziomecka   News leadership gets an overdue upgrade

Julie Posetti   The year of the fight back

Nico Gendron   Reaching Generation Z beyond the coasts

Stefanie Murray   Local news wakes up and starts collaborating

Elva Ramirez   News — but make it cinematic

Frank Mungeam   Tonight at 11: News, sports, and climate change

Jared Newman   AI-generated fakes launch a software arms race

Carolina Guerrero   Spanish-language audio blows up

John Biewen   Podcasts keep getting better

Adam B. Ellick   Video forensic reporting goes mainstream — and local

Jennifer Dargan   You don’t build diversity through one-off training sessions

Meredith Artley   Huge demand for…anything but politics

Moreno Cruz Osório   Damaged credibility and a new threat in Brazil

Hearken   Pivot to people

Craig Newmark   The end of “loudspeakers for liars”

Ernie Smith   The year we step back from the platform

Raney Aronson-Rath   We learn “digital” doesn’t have to mean “short”

Juleyka Lantigua-Williams   Podcasting battles East Coast bias

Annie Rudd   A more intimate aesthetic of politics — on Insta

Salem Solomon   Correcting our corrections

Matthew Pressman   The battle over objectivity intensifies

Jenée Desmond-Harris   It finally sinks in that some people aren’t white

Catalina Albeanu   Being responsible for what we don’t know

John Saroff   The pivot to reader revenue’s unintended consequences

Sarah Marshall   A return to destination journalism

Cindy Royal   For journalism curriculum to change, its faculty needs disruption

Ole Reißmann   The rise of vertical storytelling

Renan Borelli   Developing loyalty means developing your talent

Alexandra Svokos   Good luck convincing us millennials to pay

Carl Bialik   Fatigued news consumers will pay more for less news

Kelsey Proud   Journalism becomes the escape

Reyhan Harmanci   Selling more stories to Hollywood

Taylor Lorenz   Personal branding is more powerful than ever

Betsy O'Donovan and Melody Kramer   The most beautiful sentence in 2019 is “No.”

Michael Grant   More newsrooms experiment their way to success

Eric Nuzum   The year of the DIY podcast network

Jonas Kaiser   Catching up with “Neuland”

Simon Galperin   After capitalism’s fire, journalism’s secondary succession

An Xiao Mina   The death of consensus, not the death of truth

Knight Foundation   A year of local collaboration

Alberto Cairo   A year of uncertainty and confidence

Tshepo Tshabalala   Ahead of African elections, unlock partnerships with fact-checkers

Andrea Faye Hart   Doing less harm, not just more good

Chase Davis   We can acknowledge what we don’t know

Millie Tran   There is no magic — you’ve got this

Tyler Fisher   This is journalism’s do-or-die moment

Claire Wardle   Forget deepfakes: Misinformation is showing up in our most personal online spaces

Nikki Usher   Three ways national media will further undermine trust

Francesco Zaffarano   Towards a rethinking of journalism on social media

Heba Aly   The rise of international nonprofit news

Rishad Patel   A design system for responsible publishing

Alyssa Zeisler   We expand what (and how and who) we serve

Rebecca Lee Sanchez   We are all actors in the running rampant of political theater

Carrie Brown-Smith   Advocating a healthy civic life is no journalistic crime

Charo Henríquez   Pivot to journalism

Alexis Lloyd & Matt Boggie   The year product leads media

Robert Hernandez   Racists and sexists get replaced

Elizabeth Dunbar   Local reporters reflect on what’s not important

Matt Waite   “I went to Node.js because I wished to live deliberately”

Michael Rain   The year of the culturally relevant curator

Kainaz Amaria   We consider who’s behind the camera

Joanne McNeil   Building a digital hospice

Mandy Jenkins   Fight the urge to run away from social media

Cory Bergman   Journalism as a technology service

Jonathan Gill   Publishers build a common tech platform together

Nathalie Malinarich   Video — yes, video

Geetika Rudra   The year of actionable (local) journalism

Rebecca Searles   From silos to Swiss Army knife teams

LaToya Drake   Listen up: New stories, new storytellers

Tushar Banerjee   Interactive ads will be the new face of display advertising

Adam Thomas   In Europe, foundations invest in news

Mike Rispoli and Craig Aaron   Government funds local news — and that’s a good thing

Manoush Zomorodi   Tech will do for information overload what it did for mindfulness