AOL Change: Good or Bad?

Friday, February 26, 2010

AOL plans to build an online news format similar to that of Toronto-based start-up, Thoora, in attempts to return to it's former glory. Using Web-analytic software, AOL plans to create what Marty Moe, AOL senior vice-president, calls the "newsroom of the future." This software will help AOL to determine what news readers think is important and that it should write about.

Another component of the "newsroom of the future" includes hiring 500 full-time journalists and procuring stories form more than 3,000 freelance contributors. This allows AOL to produce original, prime content, and the better the content the more advertisers will pay for ad space.

However, content being based on what readers are doing, searching, and clicking on the Internet. Some journalists are afraid that readers influence on what they write will turn journalism's focus away from important, hard-hitting news to fluff. Fluff being celebrity gossip and what is trending in Hollywood.

Which is an excellent point. News isn't news until someone writes, blogs, or broadcasts it. How will people know what is going on in the world, if all that is being written about is someone's latest search on Google?


Courtney Glienke March 1, 2010 at 5:32 PM  

I agree with the "fluff" problem, but if it's what people want to read that may be what they need to write about. They can still write about the "hard-hitting" news, but it's also important to remember your audience.

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