Fergus Bell is an experienced journalist, editor and leading expert in digital newsgathering and the verification of user-generated content. He is also a prominent advocate for higher industry standards relating to the ethical uses of UGC and social media. In 2013 Fergus co-founded a committee for the Online News Association bringing together news leaders from across the industry to explore ethical issues related to social media and UGC. In 2016 the ONA Social Newsgathering Ethics Code was launched, with support from CNN, AFP, BBC, The Guardian and others.
Fergus has worked across both the business and editorial sides of the industry. He was the Associated Press’ first global social media and UGC editor and has played a major role in setting the current industry standards on verification. He has also led newsroom partnerships and innovation for SAM desk, a social newsgathering tool for newsrooms.
Fergus founded Dig Deeper Media in 2015 and advises broadcasters and publishers across Europe on social and digital newsgathering and newsroom innovation. He also advises a number of news-focused start-ups.
Fergus is a founding member of the Google News Lab supported First Draft News Coalition and is a graduate of the University of Leeds.