NBC News Acquires User-Generated Video Service

The news division buys Stringwire, keeping on founder Phil Graham to develop its digital efforts.

NBC News announced Monday morning the acquisition of Stringwire, a relatively young user-generated live video service that combines live streaming with social media.

The technology is intended to bolster newsgathering and eyewitness content in both the news group's television and digital properties, and Stringwire founder Phil Groman will join NBC News as product lead.

"Stringwire is at the leading edge of user-generated video products, with immediate value to our on-air and digital businesses. Long-term, we think there is great commercial potential" said senior vp and chief digital officer Vivian Schiller. "Phil is an incredibly talented developer and inventor who will bring a wealth of innovative and entrepreneurial experience to the NBC News Digital Group."

Groman, who developed Stringwire as a resource for news organization, actually built the service as part of his Master's thesis at New York University's Interactive Telecommunications Program. Stringwire has already seen its biggest successes during Hurricane Sandy and the Kenyan elections, where the service recruited and directed contributors' live footage by finding them through geographical locators such as Twitter.

NBC News will be the first media organization to the use the technology during live event coverage.