When The Information launched in 2013, the whole point was that it would provide in-depth, exclusive articles — just one or two a day — over aggregated content and news summaries. “It’s for the audience who aren’t just scanning the headlines, but those who come read a publication on a deeper level,” founder and CEO Jessica Lessin told All Things D. But times change (All Things D became Re/code became Recode) and, while The Information isn’t dropping its focus on exclusive reporting, it is recognizing that even for audiences that care about more than scanning headlines, some summarization can be useful. It doesn’t hurt that briefings are kinda hot these days, especially as publishers embrace email newsletters as the thing that just miiiiight be able to break through (The New York Times’ Morning Briefing emails are now up to 1.5 million subscribers, the company announced this week, and Continue reading "The Information’s new Briefing is a continuous update of opinionated takes on other people’s articles"
Good things can happen when a crowd goes to work on trying to figure out a problem in journalism. At the same time, completely crowdsourced news investigations can go bad without oversight — as when, for example, a group of Redditors falsely accused someone of being the Boston Marathon bomber. An entirely crowdsourced investigation with nobody to oversee it or pay for it will probably go nowhere. At the same time, trust in the media is at low and fact checking efforts have become entwined with partisan politics. So what would happen if you combined professional journalism with fact checking by the people? On Monday evening, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales launched Wikitribune, an independent site (not affiliated with Wikipedia or the Wikimedia Foundation) “that brings journalists and a community of volunteers together” in a combination that Wales hopes will combat fake news online — initially in English, then in Continue reading "Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales launches Wikitribune, a large-scale attempt to combat fake news"
The New York Times, which started publishing on Snapchat Discover on Monday after a couple of years of sending out updates through the regular app, sees a couple of audiences for the new product. One is Snapchat’s native audience. The other is the olds who, like me, might have spent several minutes Monday morning trying to figure out how to fill out the Times’ mini crossword on Snapchat Discover: For them, there is a Times Insider explainer to how to find the Times on Snapchat Discover, how to tap through its offerings, and how to fill out the crossword. For these people, there are even video how-tos. The explainer post’s slug is
don't-worry-you're-not-the-last-person-on-snapchat. Continue reading "The New York Times brings its (even briefer) morning briefings to Snapchat Discover"
“The reasons aren’t always apparent.” PolitiFact, one of Facebook’s partners in its hoax-combatting program, published a list of 156 “websites where we’ve found deliberately false or fake stories” since beginning the Facebook partnership. The sites are divided into four categories: “Parody or joke sites,” which contain some disclaimer somewhere that they are meant to be satire even if there’s nothing particularly funny about them; “news imposter sites” (“these sites attempt to trick readers into thinking they are newspapers or radio or television stations,” like CNNews3.com, which uses a logo similar to CNN’s); “fake news sites” (“most of these sites join services like Content.ad or RevContent.com that allow them to post a collection of provocative ads to make money off clicks”); and “sites that contain some fake news.” PolitiFact attempted to identify where each site was registered, which was often “exasperatingly difficult” because many of Continue reading "A new database of fake news sites details how much fakery has spread from Trump v. Clinton to local news"
In the 1990s, DJs Stretch Armstrong (Adrian Bartos) and Bobbito (Robert) Garcia introduced listeners to future stars like Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z, Eminem, and Nas on their show on Columbia University’s WKCR. “At that point in time, your show was the most important show in the world,” Nas said in a 2015 Kickstarter campaign that Stretch and Bobbito ran to fund a documentary about the history of their show. “You guys opened the door in New York for us, the next generation, to come through.” (The Kickstarter was successful, raising $65,305 from 749 backers; you can now watch the resulting documentary on Netflix.) Stretch and Bobbito’s show ended in 1998, but the pair are coming back to the air again, kind of, with an interview podcast on NPR that will begin this July. “We’re talking art, music, politics, and sports, and everything in between. It’s a Continue reading "NPR is bringing back ’90s hip-hop DJs Stretch and Bobbito"
Of the many small, annoying things about working in an office, coffee is usually somewhere on the list. Whose turn is it to make it? Who is drinking more than their share of the communal pot? Is that half-full carafe still warm? So some folks at the Los Angeles Times built a Slack bot for it. Joe Fox, a graphics and data journalist at the Times whose Twitter header includes a coffee emoji (☕). “We had been talking about some kind of automated coffee system for a while.” They threw around a few ideas: An infrared temperature sensor that would be aimed at the pot so it could theoretically Continue reading "The Los Angeles Times built a Slack bot that lets the newsroom know when the coffee is ready"
Elite Daily has done pretty well for a publication that doesn’t do very well. The Daily Mail’s parent company, DMGT, acquired it for at least $26 million in January 2015, then announced at the end of last year that it was writing down that investment because of Elite Daily’s “disappointing” performance. Nonetheless, Bustle, another site aimed at millennials, has acquired Elite Daily, presumably for a fair bit less than what Daily Mail paid. Business Insider reported the news Monday, and here is DMGT’s press release. Bustle’s parent company is now known as Bustle Digital Group; it also includes millennial mom site Romper. “This property is valuable, I know it’s valuable,” Bustle founder (and Bleacher Report co-founder) Bryan Goldberg told Business Insider. “If there’s one person who doesn’t care what the press thinks, it’s me.” (The New Yorker on Goldberg in 2013: “When Goldberg talks about his entry Continue reading "Elite Daily lost a ton of money, but Bustle just bought it from the Daily Mail anyway"