The front page isn’t what it used to be

There was a time when reporters worked hard to write stories that editors chose to appear on the  front page of a newspaper. But the front page isn’t what it once was.

  1. For microbloggers getting most of their news from Twitter, the front page is wrapped in 140 characters (with links bringing them to the full story).
  2. For old friends who count on former classmates and colleagues for newsworthy links, the front page is a Facebook stream (with links bringing them to the full story).
  3. For the student using search engines to find information, the front page is the first page of search results is the front page (with links bringing them to the full story).
  4. For digital nomads who rely on alerts to deliver timely news, the front page is a short text message on a phone (with links bringing them to the full story).
  5. For people relaxing with their new tablet, the front page might be an app like Flipboard (with links bringing them to the full story).
  6. For news junkies living on the cloud, the front page might be a group of RSS feeds displayed by Google Reader (with links bringing them to the full story).
  7. For time shifters like me, the front page might be a list of headlines gathered througout the day and saved on Instapaper (with links bringing them to the full story).

With all of these ways that people get their news and information – not to mention my6sense, paper.li and umpteen other services – journalists have more opportunity than ever to appear on front pages. The best part is that these are front pages for very customized publications where people get only the news that they’ve either chosen to follow or actively sought.

Image by “whurley” via Flickr

If Paper.li married My6Sense

While I was thinking out loud about how Paper.li might look if it ranked news based on how I interacted with them, Tac Anderson suggested a marriage between My6Sense and Paper.li. To that, My6Sense’s Louis Gray replied that his company’s benefit would be “to be the Web’s personalization broker.”

Take a look at any Paper.li paper — my J Daily for example — and imagine if that page changed based on how you interacted with each item.

  • Stories written by a certain author could rank higher if you frequently read her posts.
  • Articles from a particular site could rank lower if you rarely clicked on those links.
  • Links shared by some friends could rank higher if you frequently clicked on them. They might be called “favorite” friends.
  • Links shared by friends of favorite friends could rank higher because of their association.
  • If you frequently retweeted links from specific friends, that friend’s links could rank higher.
  • Maybe pictures (but not blog posts) shared by one friend could be ranked higher because you often click on them.
  • The whole page could be ranked with consideration of my interactions with the My6Sense mobile app.

Note that I don’t actually know the details of My6Sense’s algorithm, so these are just my own crazy ideas.

11 daily newspapers on journalism and media, powered by social links

Paper.li takes links that have been shared on Twitter and Facebook and turns them into what they call “daily newspapers.” Each publication can be powered by  links shared by one person’s social friends, or by people on specific Twitter lists. Here are 11 such Paper.li papers based on some journalism and media lists on Twitter.

  1. J Daily, based on links shared by 332 people on a Twitter list created by me.
  2. J List Daily, based on links shared by 43 people on a Twitter list created by Journalism.co.uk.
  3. Journalists to Follow Daily, based on links shared by 35 people on a Twitter list created by the Society of Professional Journalists.
  4. Linkers Daily, based on links shared by 114 people on a Twitter list created by New York Times editor Patrick LaForge.
  5. Media Daily, based on links shared by 92 people on a Twitter list created by Mashable’s Pete Cashmore.
  6. Media Analysis Daily, based on links shared by 47 people on a Twitter list created by The Huffington Post’s Craig Kanalley.
  7. Media Thinkers Daily, based on links shared by 58 people on a Twitter list created by journalism educator Mindy McAdams.
  8. Mediawonks Daily, based on links shared by 199 people on a Twitter list created by CUNY journalism professor Jeff Jarvis.
  9. Top Journalism Linkers Daily, based on links shared by 16 people on a Twitter list also created by Jay Rosen.
  10. Young Guns of Journalism Daily, based on links shared by 88 people on a Twitter list created by Spot.Us creator David Cohn.
  11. Young Smart Newsies Daily, based on links shared by 68 people on a Twitter list created by NYE journalism professor Jay Rosen.

If you know of other useful Paper.li publications related to journalism or the news industry, please add (and link to) them in the comments below.