How Satellite Imagery Became an Indispensable — and Easily Accessible — Tool for Journalists
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How Satellite Imagery Became an Indispensable — and Easily Accessible — Tool for Journalists

Anusuya Datta |
November 21, 2018

In July 2018, a disturbing video began circulating on social media. It shows two women and two young children being led at gunpoint away from a village by a group of soldiers.


The victims are blindfolded before they are shot point blank 22 times. The social media posts claimed them to be from Cameroon but the government of Cameroon initially dismissed the video as “fake news.”

The video showed a terrain that could be from anywhere in the world, and the people could be almost anywhere from Africa. But BBC Africa Eye did a thorough investigation through forensic analysis of the footage. Among other things, they poured through satellite imagery of many years trying to match them with the landmarks in the video to prove exactly where and when this incident took place and who were responsible. Cameroon’s government was forced to issue a statement clarifying their earlier stand and announced that a number of soldiers had been been arrested and are under investigation.

Satellite imagery has become an indispensable tool in journalism. Be it fact-finding or gauging the impact of a particular situation, reporting on climate events or conflict zones, because of the unbiased insights they provide, they are being extensively used by professional journalists today.

Credit by - GIJN

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