Interview with a citizen drone journalist in Istanbul: "I have been witnessing some very bad things"


As with most disruptive technologies, world-changing developments happen at the grassroots level. As Alexandra Gibb wrote in her recent paper, drone journalism might be seen as an offshoot of the maker movement, which also spawned the 3D-printing revolution.

Technically gifted hackers with a mind for politics have deployed drones above protests. Estonia, Poland and Argentina all have seen unmanned aircraft fly above police and protesters.

The latest drone journalism development comes out of Istanbul, a place which usually doesn't see political unrest. But government plans to destroy a public park for the sake of commercial development has since turned parts of Turkey's capital into a hotbed for demonstrations.

Jenk is a young man from Turkey who originally set out to record Taksim Gezi Park from the sky with his personal drone, before it was to be demolished. When he witnessed police brutality on the ground, his mission changed drastically.

I was fortunate enough to reach this man via email, and I asked him about why he decided to conduct citizen journalism with his drone, and also about what he's seen.

My story on Jenk, the drone journalist in Turkey, is published on the sUASNews website.

Posted on June 24, 2013 .