CNN snatching page out of YouTube's book

Cable news channel to launch user-submitted video page where viewers, news event witnesses can exchange info.

CNN wants some of the clips finding their way onto popular video-sharing sites, such as YouTube, to make an appearance on the cable news channel.

On Monday, CNN is expected to announce the launch of CNN Exchange, a page on the company's Web site that will feature user-submitted video, audio and articles.

The pioneer in 24-hour news broadcasting is coming to user-submitted video at a time when citizen journalism has sparked much fanfare. The trend began with text--ordinary people in the blogosphere commenting on news events or in some instances, reporting breaking news stories.

The next stage in citizen journalim appears to involve lenses and viewfinders.

Video-sharing sites, such as Revver, Grouper, Guba and YouTube have become online warehouses for war footage from Lebanon, Iraq, and Chechnya.

As part of CNN's coverage of the fighting in Lebanon earlier this month, the cable channel showed clips that it . The videos were taken by citizens as they rushed into bomb shelters or witnessed rockets crashing into buildings.

"User-generated content has the potential to play a pivotal role in journalism whether it's online or offline," Mitch Gelman, senior vice president and executive producer for CNN.com, said in a statement. "With CNN Exchange, we've essentially created a one-stop shop for CNN.com users to share their contributions with other Internet users."

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