Twitter links become newspapers with paper.li

Paper.li examines links that you share on Twitter, and links shared by people you follow, to produce what it calls a “daily newspaper.” The results are mixed but promising for a service that is in its “alpha” stage.

This service is very similar to Twitter Times, which I looked at last year.

Trends

You don’t have to be the owner of a Twitter account to create a newspaper, so I decided to make a paper for @tweetmeme, which tracks popular links on Twitter. Here is what Paper.li deduced from links shared by Tweetmeme and the 5,512 users it follows.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/ksablan/4540055981/in/photostream/

You might want to check out newspapers from these other Twitter trend trackers: Twitscoop TrendsTrending Topics and Twitturly.

Journalism

Contrast trendy papers to a newspaper culled from the links shared by CUNY journalism professor Jeff Jarvis (@jeffjarvis) and the people he follows.

Paper.li "newspaper" by @jeffjarvis

Here are daily newspapers from other forward-thinking news people: Clay Shirky (NYU), Mathew Ingram (GigaOM) and Patrick LaForge (New York Times).

Wants

Here are some features I would love to see in the next version of Paper.li:

  • Ranking: Stories/posts should be ordered according to the number of my friends who are sharing each link.
  • Lists: Create sections of my paper based on the Twitter lists that I’ve created.
  • Clicks: Watch what I click on. If you see that I frequently click on links shared by a certain user, give that person’s links more weight in the rankings. Maybe create a scoring system.
  • Strike: Let me remove items that don’t interest me. When I remove an item, decrease the score of my friends who shared that link.
  • Edit: I want to modify some of those funky headlines.
  • Timeliness: Since Paper.li is billed as a daily newspaper, you can file this under unreasonable. Still, I would love to see a service that looks at my current stream and presents it in a similar fashion to Paper.li and Twitter Times.