Storify launches public beta: Curation is a core news skill
Word has been spreading about the intriguing online curation tool Storify. So far only a select group of private beta users have been able to use it. This week Storify entered its public beta phase, so now anyone can try it. Here’s why every newsroom should learn to use a curation tool like this…
Word has been spreading about the intriguing online curation tool Storify. So far only a select group of private beta users have been able to use it. This week Storify entered its public beta phase, so now anyone can try it.
Here’s why every newsroom should learn to use a curation tool like this…
By Amy Gahran
News has always been social. People talk about current events, share links, offer opinions and context, and provide their own content. This happens through social media, blogs, media-sharing sites, and other digital channels. Storify allows you to choose key elements from this ongoing stream of content to construct a curated story-like narrative, Legos-style.
Curation is quickly becoming a core skill for news professionals. It involves recognizing that news and journalism are, and always have been, a collaborative process between reporters, sources, and communities.
By finding sources, choosing quotes, and framing context, journalists have always been engaging in a curatorial process. However, the result of that curation was packaged into a narrative story format—mainly because of the constraints of print and broadcast media.
Digital curation starts with learning the value of retweeting selectively, participating in Flickr photo pools, creating YouTube playlists, using Facebook for engagement and more. Tools like Storify allow you to to pull together a narrative that spans multiple services and platforms. It’s an especially valuable tool for telling a story in progress. The product is a work that is itself linkable and embeddable—which means, your story is easy to share.
Recently the Register Citizen (Torrington, CT) announced that one of its 18 newsroom positions will be dedicated to digital curation. It’ll be interesting to see if other news organizations follow this lead.
Storify is not the only digital curation tool out there. ScribbleLive is a similar tool designed to integrate more thoroughly with news sites. And undoubtedly there will be other entrants to this field.
The key is to start experimenting NOW with digital curation, using whichever tools are available to you. Newsrooms should foster this skill with a eye not just toward storytelling, but engagement.
Experience with digital curation increases career and business options for journalists and news organizations. But in newsrooms that are not keen on adopting digital curation tools, journalists can—and should—experiment with independent projects.
Digital curation tools will evolve. Users—perhaps especially journalists—will strongly influence this evolution.
Best practices. Recently, Staci Baird, a journalism instructor at San Francisco State University posted her guidelines for using Storify for news. She touched on this topic in her talk at the recent KDMC Mobile Symposium.
The News for Digital Journalists blog is made possible by a grant to USC Annenberg from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.
Comments (1) • Permalink • Tell-a-Friend
Tags: social media, tools, curation, skills
Had an exchange the other day about the difference between curation and reporting. To some it is the same thing. To me, curation did not rise to the level of reporting because I thought it lacked the essential ingredient: verification. However, Staci’s second rule says:
“2. Verify sources. (Yes, some stories may not require this level of reporting, but many will. You should know the difference.) Confirm Tweets, pics, videos and follow up with an in-person interview (when it makes sense for the story).”
Verify sources and confirm Tweet content. Okay, now I see how this is more journalism than relay race.
By michvinmar, 05/04/11 at 9:46 am
Page 1 of 1 pagesCommenting is not available in this section entry.