The Next Step In Journalism: Immersive Virtual Reality

February 1, 2012 | 01:11
The Next Step In Journalism: Immersive Virtual Reality
The Next Step In Journalism: Immersive Virtual Reality
From word to mouth, to print, to photo’s, to film. Over the centuries technological innovations have provided new tools for journalists to narrates their stories.

But despite the increase in available media one thing never changed: news always put us in the role of the observer. We never experience the events related to us.

But that’s in the past now.

By integrating virtual reality and journalism, former Newsweek correspondent Nonny de la Peña, has created a first person experience of a news event.

In Hunger in Los Angeles de la Peña reports on an emergency that took place at a food-bank line at the First Unitarian Church in LA.

Wearing head-mounted goggles and a body-tracking system you can virtually walk around at the scene and interact with the characters. As you’re standing in line, a man is suddenly gripped by a seizure and collapses. The paramedics are called but in the ensuing chaos another man muscles his way to the front of the line and grabs food, supplies and makes a run for it.

The audio is taken from the real incident recorded by De la Peña as she witnessed the event. When you move closer to a character you can hear what they’re saying, just like in real life.

With the virtual recreation of her eyewitness account De la Peña wants to raise awareness for hunger in America. The man with the seizure turns out to be a diabetic, whom, for lack of food, has slipped into a coma.

As the scene fades words emerge: 1 in 6 people in America are hungry. 1 in 5 are children.

Hunger in Los Angeles at The Sundance Film Festival

Photo: Hunger in Los Angeles

Loading comments...
related items