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Shorty Award for best live event coverage goes to Ruptly for Beirut blast

May 26, 2021

Ruptly, the international news and media agency, has won the prestigious Shorty Award for Best Live Event Coverage for its outstanding reporting of the Beirut port explosion and its aftermath.

The blast devastated large swathes of the city on 4 August 2020, killing over 200 people and injuring at least 6,500 others. Caused by a fire at a storage facility that contained nearly 3,000 tonnes of ammonium nitrate, it was one of the most powerful non-nuclear blasts in history.

Ruptly’s local video crews were at the site within minutes. Within just one hour, the agency was the first media to have a live feed up and running from the scene, and continued streaming live throughout the night and the following morning. As protests erupted and the authorities responded with force, Ruptly’s video journalists were on the ground to cover the street clashes in real time.

Ruptly’s video crews were caught up in the blast and tear-gassed during the protests, but bravely carried on working for 13 days. Their vital footage was streamed live in 21 countries and, combined with news packages and other video content which was broadcast in a further 25 countries, brought live news of unfolding events to approximately 30 million people around the world.

Ruptly CEO Dinara Toktosunova said: “Live news is at the core of what we do so this is a tremendous but fitting honour, and a tribute to our team. Such outstanding reporting is only possible thanks to the dedication of our newsroom and of our field producers, freelancers and camera crews. This award is testament to the real positive value and impact of their tireless work.”

The Shorty Awards, now in their 13th year, were the first awards show to honour social media and digital content. By constantly evolving along with the changing landscape of the medium, the Shortys remains the most prominent award show of its kind.


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