Tag Archives: New Media

Google To Feature Longform Journalism In Search

Google's In-depth News Search

Inside Search

Google will now begin to feature in-depth reporting and longform writing in their search queries.

Where the default Google search on any given topic brings up recently written news, the company will now cater to users who are looking for more thoughtful coverage on a subject. As Hamish McKenzie of PandoDaily explains, Google has enabled a kind of Twitter-style news consumption. This is where the most prominent stories Google offers are always the stories that were written up moments earlier, or stories that were extremely popular within the current news cycle.

The advantage of this style is that it provides readers with the news of the day, the word of the moment without much fuss. The downside, though, is that other kinds of journalism, the kinds that take longer to produce, or that don’t link strongly to the events that are happening THAT DAY are crowded out. This mode favors rapid-fire news over thoughtful essays, press release blog posts over careful criticism.

For example: If you searched “Boston Bomber” Google will give you a bunch of crappy, recently written articles about the Rolling Stones cover or the alleged revelations that he was into right-wing-conspiracy theories. While these links have merit, it would also be extremely useful for Google to give us some definitive accounts of the whole Boston bombing episode–not just the insignificant trickling of brand new news stories.

This novel, in-depth highlight will help readers more fully understand.

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The Wild Ambition of Youth Journalism And Vice media

Writing in the Guardian, Tim Adams summarizes the allure of Vice, “Twenty years ago Shane Smith set up a hip little Montreal magazine called Vice. Then along came the internet and Vice reinvented itself as the edgiest, wildest online media brand in the world. It’s staffed by twentysomethings and aimed at a global youth who have no interest in mainstream media. Which is why he is courted by everyone from Rupert Murdoch to Google.”

Where public trust towards long standing new outlets has eroded, especially for young people, Vice aims to explore the absurdity of contemporary life and the mass hypocrisy of Western politics. Adams interviews the cofounder and CEO of Vice, Shane Smith, and extracts golden nuggets of media wisdom:

But the fact is four corporations own all of American news, and they are all equally scared of losing Budweiser or whoever as their advertisers. The greatest propaganda coup of the American right has been to convince its citizens that we are in the grip of a liberal conspiracy. As a result, Obama is to the right of Richard Nixon on most issues. And there is we believe, certainly some space to exploit there.” He pauses, smiles, concludes his lesson for the day. “And we, Vice, aim to exploit it.

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VentureBeat VS PandoDaily: A Twitter Tiff Over Attribution

  1. Journalists prize scoops.  It allows them to claim temporal ownership of a story, to say, with authority, “Look what I found!”  It expresses a reporter’s acumen and cunning, her connections and foresight.  But online, news aggregation is the new “reporting.”  Repackaged headlines are the new “fresh” angles. And for many sites, news scoops and insightful essays are less important than an endless drip of content — even if it’s someone else’s.
    VentureBeat and PandoDaily are not the shithole domains I’m talking about.  VB provides hard tech news and awesome, nerd-tastic game reviews.  Pando covers tech and start ups but also specializes in thoughtful commentary — on Valley business culture and trends in the social Web.  In fact, Sarah Lacy, the EiC of Pando, makes a special point of separating her site’s original reporting from stories curated from other websites.  Perhaps this is why she took issue with a story on VentureBeat that hat-tipped a Pando writer, but did not initially link to the Pando piece.  Here is the play-by-play on Twitter:
  2. sarahcuda
    wow great article on @venturebeat about my wifi costing me $60 on this flight. did they remember to delete @paulcarr’s byline? #shameless
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:06:03
  3. Here, Sean Ludwig, the author of the VB story fairly covers his butt.
  4. paulcarr
    The correct phrase, @seanludwig, is “as first reported by…”. But, y’know, w-ever.
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:09:46
  5. But Pando’s Paul Carr is still annoyed that Ludwig didn’t link him.
  6. sarahcuda
    @seanludwig @paulcarr wow that was magically deleted in my browser. guess it’s a feature of this $60 internet…
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:10:15
  7. seanludwig
    @paulcarr Updated the story with better attribution. Just trying to get the message out there. These changes are outrageous.
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:14:09
  8. It’s settled, right?
  9. dylan20
    @sarahcuda @paulcarr No conspiracy here. @seanludwig saw Paul’s tweet, took the tip, & did reporting/writing before seeing your story
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:18:31
  10. Shit gets real when Dylan Tweney, the Executive Editor of VentureBeat, gets involved.
  11. dylan20
    @sarahcuda @VentureBeat @paulcarr But now we’ve seen your story, we’re happy to add a link. Not trying to be dicks or anything. But w-ever
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:19:21
  12. The male humanoid displays passive aggression.
  13. sarahcuda
    @dylan20 @paulcarr @seanludwig didn’t suggest conspiracy. suggested “shameless”
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:19:33
  14. Lacy stands her ground.
  15. dylan20
    @sarahcuda @paulcarr @seanludwig Not that either. Just working from a Twitter tip combined with not refreshing Pando every 15 minutes
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:26:22
  16. Tweney throws in some sarcasm, essentially saying: look, Sarah, I don’t freaking scan Pando every second to see if my reporters have overlapped their reporting with your reporting.
  17. paulcarr
    @dylan20 Actually, if the initial tip was grabbed from twitter, one assumes my link to the pando story was also seen. No refresh required.
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:27:18
  18. The writer of the original story, Carr, calls Tweney out by saying: you saw my initial tweet and the link to the story, but your writer still did not link to me.
  19. Boom! Tweney hits back with the original thought that Carr tweeted, which was not a link to a story, but the initial scoop, the kernel of what the story would be.  “Details to come,” it read.
  20. dylan20
    @sarahcuda you might encourage your writers not to tweet about stories they haven’t written yet. 😉
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:32:36
  21. And to finish it off, Tweney does his best impression of Varys from Game of Thrones.
  22. sarahcuda
    note to self: if my “reporting” job is ever watching competitors’ twitter feeds hoping for stories, find new line of work
    Tue, Sep 18 2012 14:45:16
  23. PWNage!  Lacy is no push over.  She clowns on Tweney for conducting a kind of journalistic twitter trolling.

    I respect both editors for fiercely defending their writers. Too many editors throw their underlings under the guillotine after shitty blogging mishaps.  Still, this case is strange because the attribution in question was based off a twitter scoop, not a published story.  I think Lacy wins the argument, but if you take Tweney at his word, he didn’t really do anything wrong (except come off a bit hormonal).

    —–

    I’m upping my Internet game.  If you enjoyed my style come feast on my tweets.  @PlanetHozz

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