WAN-IFRA

A publication of the World Editors Forum

Date

Thu - 17.04.2014


personalized news

Google searchers who use Google+ will start seeing content from the social network in their search results, Google announced yesterday. Users will now be able to see information shared with them on Google+ in their search results along with Google+ profiles and pages related to their areas of interest. Picasa photos will also be integrated into results.

"We're transforming Google into a search engine that understands not only content, but also people and relationships" says Google Fellow Amit Singhal in a blog post. The new move is described by the company as "Search, plus Your World."

Google tells you at the top of the page how many personal results have been generated for your query and you can choose to view these separately, to see them integrated into the general results, or to not see them at all. Personal results are distinguished by a specific icon and are marked as Public, Limited or Only you.

It will be possible to add users to your circles directly from the search results page, the blog post specified.

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-01-11 14:28

This is a big week for Flipboard. After launching in China on Monday, today the social news reader app has finally released a version for the iPhone.

The new iPhone app does just what Flipboard on the iPad did; collect stories from social media accounts as well as other sources and present them to readers in a visually pleasing format.

But there are significant differences. For one thing, the iPhone app works by swiping up and down, rather than the old format of turning pages from right to left. More importantly, the phone app introduces "cover stories". This new section learns from your interaction with content so that it can deliver stories that are most interesting and relevant to you.

The differences are part of a drive to distinguish between the lean-back platform of the iPad, which most people use before bed, and the lean-forward platform of the iPhone, which users are more likely to access on the go or standing in queues.

Author

Hannah Vinter's picture

Hannah Vinter

Date

2011-12-07 16:25

Are you ready to meet Siri's sister? No, not another shrill-voiced digital assistant, but in fact a new discovery engine, brought to you by Siri's sister company, Trapit. Like the iPhone 4S's voice command technology, Trap.it is the product of technologies developed in the CALO - Cognitive Assistant that Learns and Organizes - project. Trapit is now its own company and has begun raising funds, including seeking capital from Horizon Ventures, one the sponsors of Facebook, Spotify and Siri.

So Trapit has an impressive heritage, being descended from a $200 million artificial intelligence project, but what is it about Trapit that differentiates it from the ever-increasing amount of aggregators and discovery engines out there?

Conceptually it's not so different to Stumble Upon, a discovery engine that learns what you do and don't like. However, instead of flicking from page to page, Trapit simultaneously displays several panels related to different subjects- i.e. the trap - that the reader has said they are interested in or are likely to be interested in. When new information is found about those issues, Trapit updates the feed.

Author

Katherine Travers

Date

2011-11-16 17:58

Yahoo! is launching its own personalised digital newsstand product this autumn, which it describes as a 'game changer.' First announced in February, the newsstand and personalisation platform will be called will be an application called Livestand and include an array of content from the likes of Forbes and more specialist titles, including one specialist surf title.

Livestand is based around HTML5, as is Yahoo!'s webmail site, which aims to offer a better customer experience for users while being platform-agnostic.

This new digital reader may inspire greater confidence in the company as the recent firing of Carol Bartz, its former chief executive, coupled with the fact that the company is currently up for sale, have been interpreted as signs that the company 'lacks vision'.

Author

Katherine Travers

Date

2011-09-19 18:59

The world of journalism has become increasingly entwined with technological developments: the smart-phone and the tablet have become woven into the fabric of day-to-day life, so for many the daily paper, which was once perused during the daily commute, a quick tea break or over lunch has now been replaced with an electronic device. The news from around the world can now fit snugly inside your pocket.

Journalism is fighting a moving battle. That means that applications - for smartphone and tablet - are often the weapons of choice. Every news organisation wants more people to have their app so more people read their digital content - and, crucially, pay for it too. So naturally, the more downloads the better, right?

Actually, that may not be entirely true.

PaidContent points out that in fact download figures don't necessarily indicate financial success, despite the fact that many corporations cite app download figures as proof that this aspect of their digital strategy is working. However, just because an app has been downloaded, doesn't mean it has been used. Facebook applications are measured on the basis of daily active users and monthly active users, which indicate exactly how popular the apps, are in terms of use - a far more accurate measure of success and one that is of far more use to advertisers.

Author

Katherine Travers

Date

2011-09-12 16:36

CNN has taken a step towards boosting its personalised content by acquiring the online magazine Zite.

Zite offers consumers the chance to read content which is directly of interest to them, gathered from various sources around the web, in an advertisement free window on an iPad.

Increasingly, personalised content is becoming of more interest to major news outlets, such as CNN. Zite, whose application has been downloaded by 125,000 people, provides the news outlet with technology to "help CNN's websites and apps serve more personalized content, making our current digital services even better", as CNN's General Manager of Digital, KC Estenson stated in an interview with Mashable.

Zite, on the other hand, will not become simply a tool of dissemination of CNN's content. CNN will help Zite "do a wide variety of deals" with other media companies.

Initially, publishers were unwelcoming towards Zite and its ad-free aggregation. However, clearly this attitude has mellowed over time and large media groups are beginning to see the advantages of reader-targeted content.

Author

Katherine Travers

Date

2011-08-31 13:14

Personalization is quickly becoming a key concept in the world of online news. A new study discovered, however, that most readers are reluctant to actively personalize content, preferring to let someone else do the editorial selection.

The Guardian's Roy Greenslade highlighted a recent study by journalism academic Neil Thurman, titled "Making 'The Daily Me': Technology, economics and habit in the mainstream assimilation of personalized news." The key finding of the study, which was preceded by two years of research, was that readers are far less enthusiastic about news personalization than many think. The whole study can be read here.

According to Thurman, "active personalization," such as homepage customization, grew only 20%. Meanwhile, "passive personalization" in the form of news sites filtering and recommending articles based on browsing behaviour, grew by 60% over the same period. The research also suggested that readers are generally unable to accurately predict their news preferences.

Thurman also noted that during the research, The Washington Post, The Sun, The New York Times and The Daily Telegraph all stopped marketing their "My Page" services - a confirmation that readers have been slow to start using the possibility of personalizing their news.

Author

Teemu Henriksson's picture

Teemu Henriksson

Date

2011-05-12 17:02

These are busy days for the industry of personalized news.

On Wednesday, April 21st the Washington Post launched its news aggregation site Trove, and on Thursday, April 22nd the New York Times launched its news aggregation iPad app, News.me.

Peter Kafka from MediaMemo reported previously this week that the app's website had been updated with new information and a "coming soon" announcement, and that the app was getting ready to launch.

News.me's aim is to provide filtered and personalized social news streams to users. Other apps exist with the same purpose, like Zite and Flipboard.

Even though they have more or less the same goal, they differ in some aspects.

News.me

Author

Federica Cherubini's picture

Federica Cherubini

Date

2011-04-22 17:01

Just about everyone in the news industry is looking for "new patterns for the future of news".

It seems pretty certain that social networks will play an even more important role in defining the new ways users will consume the news, as will personalization.

Betting on this comes the new platform launched by the Washington Post: Trove, a free news aggregation website which allows users to get a personalized information.

The Washington Post anticipated its launch last February.

As TechCrunch reported, it combines algorithms and the editorial team's expertise to aggregate and offer news from more than 10,000 sources. Trove takes advantage of Facebook Connect - the article said - to pull in user's interests as outlined by his or her Facebook profile to help jump-start the personalization part of the equation.
Users can then create news streams called "channels", which filter news on specific topics - the Los Angeles Times reported - such as Google, Obama, books, sports or whatever he/she is interested in.

Author

Federica Cherubini's picture

Federica Cherubini

Date

2011-04-22 11:31

Is the future all about personalization?

As Mashable reported, The Washington Post announced it is to launch Trove, an aggregator news site which enables users to get personalized news streams based on their personal choice and interests. The site is currently in private beta and is expected to be launched in March, the article said.

The Washington Post is only the latest in a growing list of news organizations who have created a personalised news consumption channel.

Yahoo! has recently announced the launch of "Livestand from Yahoo!", a digital newsstand and personalization platform which will deliver in a tablet-friendly format, news based on Yahoo content as well as from other publishers.

And AOL has also revealed its plan to launch an iPad app called Editions which gathers personalized aggregated news from around the web.

Author

Federica Cherubini's picture

Federica Cherubini

Date

2011-02-14 18:25

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