This paper introduces the concept and discusses the implications of immersive journalism, which is the production of news in a form in which people can gain first-person experiences of the events or situation described in news stories. The fundamental idea of immersive journalism is to allow the participant, typically represented as a digital avatar, to actually enter a virtually recreated scenario representing the news story. The sense of presence obtained through an immersive system (whether a Cave or head-tracked head-mounted displays [HMD] and online virtual worlds, such as video games and online virtual worlds) affords the participant unprecedented access to the sights and sounds, and possibly feelings and emotions, that accompany the news. This paper surveys current approaches to immersive journalism and the theoretical background supporting claims regarding avatar experience in immersive systems. We also provide a specific demonstration: giving participants the experience of being in an interrogation room in an offshore prison. By both describing current approaches and demonstrating an immersive journalism experience, we open a new avenue for research into how presence can be utilized in the field of news and nonfiction.

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