Live Streams The future of internet video

"Humans are fundamentally social animals. Always have been and probably always will be and the rise of social media plays into that." - Nick Blunden

The rise of social media but more specifically; live-streaming. This can be defined as internet content which is broadcast in real time. The idea of live-streams have been adopted by many popular social networks including Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter via Periscope. However as with any form of social media, there is a degree of risk which no one seems able to reduce.

A chilling trend has recently been making rounds via live-streams. Assaults, murders and suicides are being broadcast to the entire world with little to no moderation on such content from the host platform.

"Criminals, murderers and terrorists have found that they can go directly to a seemingly eager audience to view crime as it happens."

Live streams are poorly policed. Sites like Facebook and Periscope rely on users to moderate content by flagging videos and reporting its violation. Although self moderation seems pleasant it can result in dire delays in action against misconduct. Us viewers, the audience for many live-streams need to start taking responsibility and initiative by flagging unethical, immoral and illegal content and ensure the safety and well-being of one another.

Below is an example of the kind of videos which have made rounds across the internet with little moderation. Unfortunately tragic videos like this are all over the worldwide web.

Warning: The following video contains graphic language and imagery.

"Explore the world through the eyes of somebody else" -Periscope.

February 27, 2016 we explored the world through the eyes of Marina Lonina as she filmed and broadcast live via Periscope, the rape of her 17 year old friend.

Ms Lonina, 18 and the victim were invited to the offender, Raymond Gates' apartment in Ohio where they "drank alcohol until the victim was heavily intoxicated".

Mr Gates, 29 was sentenced to nine years in prison for the crime and Ms Lonina faces only nine months.

Lonina's attorney, Sam Shamansky, pleaded the stream was in best interest of the victim as she thought her action might prevent the assault.

However prosecutor, Ron O'Brien later added Ms Lonina kept filming because she was distracted by the large response she received.

"She got, I guess, taken up with all the 'likes' that her livestream was getting and therefore continued to do it, and did nothing to aid the victim" he said.

"Live video streaming is a fun, engaging way to connect with your followers and grow your audience" -Facebook

Steve Stephens' audience certainly grew but through horrendously streaming his murder of Robert Godwin Sr through Facebook live.

The world watched Mr Stephens, 37 shoot Mr Godwin Sr, 74 last month in Ohio. Police confirmed no connection between them and called Stephens' actions nonsensical.

Stephens posted a series of videos before the manslaughter explaining actions to come. He also forces blame on his mother and ex-girlfriend for it all.

"I'm at the point where I snap. I got a lot of built in anger and frustration man" he explained to a friend on the phone.

"Past year has been really f*cked up for me". Stephens continues, explaining a past relationship with his ex driving him crazy and making him gamble.

"I lost everything I had man. I don't have sh*t. I'm out of options". He finishes, blaming his mother and ex for the monster he has become.

"Watch as the community shares new sides of their lives" -Instagram

Thirteen year old, Malachi Hemphill from Georgia accidentally shot and killed himself as friends watched on Instagram live.

Malachi was found, lying pool of blood after his mother, Shaniqua Stephens broke down his bedroom door which she says he never locked.

"He's only 13 and just the thought of me seeing him on the floor will never leave my brain" Mrs Stephens said.

“My daughter screamed and said: ‘Ma turn his phone off!’ As I proceeded to look at his phone he was on Instagram Live.”

Both Malachi's family and the police are unsure how a gun ended up in the teen's hands as the matter is still being investigated.

The parents are positive they've done their best to raise Malachi right and be role models but now know outside influences still make great impacts.

"Monitor your children" Mrs Stephens stresses. "More now than anything".

In conclusion, I cannot tell everyone to put down their phones and quit videoing. At the current rate, live-streaming is on it's way to becoming the most mainstream way of communicating. Live-streams are practically inevitable. My message is to simply embrace it while keeping the safety of ourselves and others at heart.

Adobe Spark Video

Title: Safe Streaming

Category: Education

Author: Tershia Petersen

Credits:

Created with images by Dboybaker - "Eyes" • janeb13 - "girl smartphone apple" • lratz - "Shadow"

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