‘A sort of extreme camping trip with people trying to kill you’

Cameraman Stuart Webb describes his experience of being on patrol with the Coldstream Guards in Afghanistan. He was working for Channel 4 News with Alex Thomson. The pair came under fire as they moved along a ditch with the Guards…


"As-live" Twitter reportage

Alex Thomson’s report from Babaji in Helmand was broadcast on Channel 4 yesterday evening. During the embed he also experimented with providing ‘as-live’ Twitter updates:

"Soldier’s just been been shot in the head on roof few feet away.. RMP Tom McGuffy . He’s ok – took his helmet not his brain."

"They’re giving him water, . He can’t believe he’s alive. They’re ANA using RPGs from the front door. This compound mt’ nt be all that safe.."

These tweets initially caused some confusion as Twitter users thought they were receiving live information from the battlefield. Of course, operational security meant the Twitter updates were being delayed:

"I say again this is not live tweeting. I’m relaying tweets as I wrote them. As it happened. Op Sec means you have to delay.."

Later, Thomson added a ‘(Not live)’ directive to help his audience:

"(Not live) Oh – turns out our shot sentry was wearing a helmet camera when the bullet hit. Bingo! Welcome to 21st century war."

Hopefully, we’ll find out more about the embed and the experiment with this form of front line ‘as-live’ reporting at this event at Coventry University on Thursday.