Sunday, 16th January 2011
While we’re waiting for News Corporation’s launch of the iPad newspaper, 'The Daily’ – delayed due to technical issues around the iOS subscription API (http://digbig.com/5bdfbb ) (see http://www.vivavip.com/go/e32024 or http://www.vivavip.com/go/e31552 for other postings on The Daily) – let’s look at other news facilities available on the web.
Last week, editorsweblog (http://digbig.com/5bdfba) alerted us to a new service called Newsle (http://www.newsle.com), designed to supplement traditional new sources with information on friends and public figures. As somebody who spends a lot of time monitoring news on individuals, this caught my eye.
The service, currently in beta, searches for news - from public sources, not social sites - on your Facebook and LinkedIn contacts and creates a newsfeed with articles that mention them. It is also possible to add public figures of your choice and to monitor their activity.
In addition, Newsle will suggest other individuals to follow. As co-founder Axel Hansen put it: 'the goal of Newsle is to do what Facebook doesn’t do: filter out the social "news"'. As TechCrunch pointed out (http://digbig.com/5bdfay), the service is likely to be most effective with users’ LinkedIn contacts, but this may change as Facebook becomes more relevant for corporate use.
In any case, Newsle looks like an interesting addition to aggregators and well worth a try from a researcher’s point of view. A service with a similar idea is Paper.li (http://paper.li), a Swiss company that has just received $2.1 million in venture capital funding (http://digbig.com/5bdfax) to 'establish partnerships with global service and content providers'. Paper.li is already well-established.
Launched last summer, it aggregates news from social sites like Twitter and Facebook and turns this into a personalised online newspaper. Users are able to decide on the type of content they are interested in, based on keywords, hashtags and usernames – particularly useful for those following news via Twitter.
Of course, if content is inaccessible due to privacy settings, then it can’t be aggregated. Nevertheless, despite these restrictions Paper.li has already attracted 2 million unique users. It produces 140,000 daily newspapers and is available in four languages: English, Spanish, German and French.
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