Monday, February 22, 2010

Hot Off the Virtual Presses: The Future Of News ... AOL-Style

Business Week reports that "AOL Moves to Build Tech 'Newsroom of the Future'"

Here are three take-away messages for AOL's news of the future:

  • "AOL is using software to determine which articles to write and then give journalists up-to-the-minute data on how much traffic those articles generate."
  • "AOL is even considering sharing a portion of quarterly profits with staffers whose work fetches the most page views."
  • "To help get traffic flowing back to its site, AOL is letting user interest play a role in story assignments. Editors use internally developed software to figure out what topics are hot on the Web, based on activity on such sites as Google and Facebook. Frequently, stories are assigned to explore such popular topics as 'How to Open Champagne,' which was published in December on AOL food site Slashfood."
Let's see now, what should journalists aspire to write about?
Healthcare reform? Corruption in our political system? Long-term mass unemployment? The war in Afghanistan?

Well, maybe not....
How about Tiger Woods, Champagne-opening tricks and how to gett your hands on that new Gucci bag?

Any takers?

Hans Sandberg

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