DIESEL: Interactive 2010 Spring Shopping Video Catalogue
Diesel’s new Spring 2010 lookbook video combines three of my favorite things: videos, wasting time and shopping. Instead of watching, clicking about the website to find that killer red dress and then buying it, the new video allows you to mouse over said dress and put it in your cart right away. Admittedly, the shopping feature is a tad clunky in execution, but they get major points for sticking it to old media with this one. Check out the Real Thing here.
Cross-posted from my blog on TrueSlant.com
In a panel discussion heard ’round the publishing world, Newser media columnist and notorious inflamatory-claim-making-attention-whore Michael Wolff claimed that 80% of newspapers will be dead and gone within 18 months. Also present for Wolff’s proclamation of doom was Craigslist founder Craig Newmark, on whom Wolff pinned most of the blame for the newspaper shit storm that’s well under way. (The oft-repeated idea here being that Craigslist done stole the classified business from papers.)
Not one to lie down and take it, Newmark in turn pinned the blame on sloppy reporting that doesn’t live up to public expectation. “They failed on that weapons of mass destruction thing. And they failed on that financial collapse thing,” he said. Both true, but neither argument is central when it comes to the demise of the printed word.
On the one hand you’ve got Wolff fawning for the cameras and bitching about Craigslist when the fact that Craigslist now claims most of the classified ad content in the US is true but irrelevant. Yes, it happened and print can’t sustain itself without that business. But local papers could easily outdo Craigslist in terms of localized personals (bikes for sale, etc.), they just haven’t gotten their shit together enough to do so. The problem is not just a loss of classified revenue, it’s a lack of ingenuity. That said, I still think most papers have got a little more than 18 months.
While interning at the State Department in 2005, Rachel Sterne watched Kofi Annan plead with the Security Council to stop the madness in Darfur and saw nothing happening. The classic next move in a situation like that would’ve probably involved buying a supportive “Save Darfur” t-shirt and turning genocide into her go-to talking point for dinner parties.
But for Sterne, who had just received her BA from New York University and was, no doubt, full of that particular brand of youthful idealism that makes problems seem scalable, that didn’t seem like enough. Her belief that “there was no public pressure about Darfur because the public didn’t have a personal connection with the issue” plagued her, inspiring the founding of GroundReport.com in the summer of 2007. An open source global news site that shares revenue with its far-flung network of 4,000 citizen reporters, GroundReport has been called “the Wikipedia of news.” Its professed goal is to democratize the media by making original, intelligent reporting possible for amateurs and professionals alike. More importantly though, the site produces international news at a fraction of the cost of the mainstream media by relying on the locals for coverage.
Though still in its infancy, the start up site has already garnered a decent amount of attention. Early on interviews with CNNMoney.com have since been superceded by features in Business Week, which recently named Sterne one of its Top 25 Social Entrepreneurs. Similarly promising are content partnerships with the likes of The Huffington Post and Mogulus.
Given the journalism world’s recent and widespread adoption of the Throwing Spaghetti At A Wall and Seeing What Sticks, this attention comes as no surprise. Because while the concept of using a worldwide network of reporters to cover international news is nothing revolutionary, GroundReport’s reliance on citizens and its willingness to share the profit with them is something of a new experiment. Continue reading
After three days and five different screencasting services, I have finally found one that is both free and works reasonably well. Only drawback is that the video won’t embed on WordPress without some plug in action that I have yet to install. So click here to check it out.
The site is called See.Click. Fix and it functions much like a digital version of reporting something through 311 (non-emergency problems). With this site though, previously reported issues are visible and you can add to them, track their progress, and know that they haven’t been entirely lost.
I’m not sure how much it will do in New York where the problems reported aren’t so numerous and the bureaucracy is enormous, but the site’s already had some success in terms of smaller towns subscribing and legitimately using the site to monitor public space problems. Anyway, here’s to hoping that my bitching about blocked bike lanes will do something…
The Huffington Post is just decided to dedicate $1.75million to investigative reporting. They’re not quite sure exactly where they’ll spend it yet, or on whom, but say it’s definitely happening. In preparation for this little experiment and in the wake of the successes (and a few failures) of HuffPost’s Off The Bus project, the site just released it’s list of Citizen Journalism Publishing Standards.
I’m excited about what they’re doing with their investigative reporting project, but mother of god, the most common sense, boring list ever. Honestly, it almost makes me question citizen journalism in general the the HuffPost expects to be receiving posts from people who don’t even understand that web content should include links and may be edited by, well, editors. Is this just the HuffPost assuming we’re idiots or are wannabe journalists actually dumb enough to need these reminders?
Photo: Flickr CC
Anyone with reporting experience knows what an expensive pain in the ass it can be to find good quotes for a story. Put the event up for discussion around the world and watch as “difficult” turns into a full fledged nightmare. It’s part of what makes the shrieks about losing original reporting on the under-funded web so loud.
DePaul University grad student Craig Kanalley wants to make opinion quotes and eyewitness accounts easier to wrangle. His site, BreakingTweets.com, uses Twitter and a group of editors to format news stories in an unusually interactive way that provides quotes for other journalists.
It starts with an editor, who writes a one or two paragraph explanatory intro about the story, then come the tweeters, who send opinions, analysis and eyewitness media. Editors cull the best and most insightful tweets from the bunch, as well as occasionally interjecting with their own updates.
“I think a well done Breaking Tweets story can be just as valuable as a longer form traditional news story on the same subject,” Kanalley said.
More importantly though, it’s a model you can use for your own blogging. Whether your blog is geographically anchored or just subject-specific, the Breaking Tweets method translates to hyper-local blogging easily. Use it to enmesh your own authorship with reader opinion, to collect media and organize the endless comment stream that is Twitter.
Below you’ll find an interview with Kanalley about where Breaking Tweets came from and how his team is making it work: Continue reading