Magazine article Editor & Publisher

AP Blockbuster's Multimedia Release: Korean War Expose Has Instant Impact

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

AP Blockbuster's Multimedia Release: Korean War Expose Has Instant Impact

Article excerpt

Flexing its multimedia muscles, The Associated Press launched a land, air, and sea campaign Sept. 29 to disseminate information stemming from its blockbuster special report on the alleged mass killings of civilians by U.S. soldiers in the early days of the Korean War.

Watchwords of getting out the information were "simultaneous" and "across the board."

At precisely 12:30 edt, out went the word - and photos, audio tracks, tv clips, graphics, and Web site material related to the special report, which was more than a year in the making. The ap doggedly traced veterans in 130 or so interviews by telephone and in person to produce convincing evidence that American soldiers machine-gunned 200 or more helpless civilians under a giant railroad bridge near No Gun Ri, a village about 100 miles southeast of Seoul, capital of South Korea.

"This is the ap of the year 2000 and beyond; this shows the breadth and scope of what can be done," said Kelly Smith Tunney, ap's director of corporate communications and assistant to the president.

Reflecting the growing importance of the Internet, the ap special report included an ambitious Web package for use by ap member papers, complete with audio and video material.

"It was a milestone for the news department working together on a major story," said Ruth Gersh, the editor of multimedia services, who leads a staff of 30.

In addition, tv footage was distributed by aptn, an international video service based in London, and audio and graphics packages were released. …

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