Tag Archives: blottr

Citizen journalism site Blottr launches Facebook app

Citizen journalism news site Blottr is the latest news organisation to release a “frictionless sharing” Facebook app.

Blottr has opted for a Guardian-style app where readers access news and comment without having to leave the social networking site.

The Huffington Post UK, which released an app at the end of February, followed the Independent in promoting social interaction on the news site.

In a release Blottr said:

The app leverages the social functionality Facebook users are already familiar with to automatically discover and highlight Blottr content their friends have read. Through the app, users will also be able to report news and add content directly to the Blottr site.

We want to engage new readers who may not already interact with Blottr. Registered users can now notice Blottr’s content via their friends’ interactions or activity report on their wall.

Blottr founder Adam Baker said in a statement:

This move signifies the importance social media plays in the distribution, discovery and consumption of news content. Our aim is to make consuming and contributing to news-related content as efficient, simple and timely as possible.

The Blottr Facebook app socially connects people with each other through the type of content they consume and makes the discovery of our content much more fluid.

Citizen journalism site Blottr expands into France and Germany

Citizen journalism breaking news site Blottr has launched in France in and is due to follow with a German site next week.

Blottr, which launched in the UK in August 2010 and received £1 million in funding to expand six months ago, relies on a network of more than 1,000 citizen reporters, non-professional journalists and bloggers who report on breaking news and provide comment and get paid by how many clicks their story receives.

The official launch of the French site, which will focus on Paris, Lyon and Marseille, takes place in Paris today; the German site, with news from Berlin, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Munich, is due to go live next Monday (24 October). Blottr aims to expand into 50 cities in 10 countries within the next six months.

Country managers from France and Germany have been brought in to lead the French and German sites, both working from the London office, which now has 12 paid members of staff.

The UK site has citizen journalist contributors in eight cities – Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Leeds, Leicester, London and Manchester – and totals 1.4 million unique users a month in the UK, growing around 20 per cent month-on-month, Jerry Boston from Blottr told Journalism.co.uk.

Blottr founder Adam Baker said:

We are really excited about bringing citizen journalism to France, a country with a deep-rooted, passionate and traditional set of values when it comes to publishing and the consumption of news.

We enter France at a time when the appetite of the public to report news, coupled with technological advancements that enable people to report it, has never been so great. We look forward to giving the people of France a voice and a platform to report news they witness for the betterment of all.

Blottr’s French site can went live last Wednesday (12 October) and the German site can be viewed from next Monday (24 October).

Citizen journalism site Blottr nominated for Smarta 100 award

Citizen journalism news site Blottr has been nominated for the 2011 Smarta 100 list of “the most resourceful, original, exciting and disruptive small businesses in the UK”.

User-generated news site Blottr currently includes news from seven UK cities and employs a ‘Write to Earn’ scheme that allows citizen journalists to earn money per multiple of page impressions.

Blottr is the only citizen news site up for an award. The full list of nominated business is here, where you can vote.

The overall winner will be announced on 21 September and will receive £10,000.

According to Smarta 100, last year’s winners have gone on to partner with the likes of LinkedIn and Lastminute.com.

Founder of Blotter Adam Baker told Journalism.co.uk:

We are absolutely delighted to be recognised by Smarta as one of the top 100 startups in the UK.

The calibre of past winners and the other 99 companies selected this year, underlines the progress Blottr has made and the ever-increasing popularity of our service and citizen journalism.




Citizen journalism platform Blottr launches iPhone app

User generated news service Blottr has launched an iPhone app called Paparappzi. It is to follow with the release of an app for Android devices next week.

The app is designed to encourage people to submit news stories covering their local communities. Its challenge now is to encourage people to upload and share news.

Blottr, which launched in August, focuses on seven cities – Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Leeds, London and Manchester.

Paparappzi has an intuitive design, allowing users to write a short news item, add a photo and a geolocation and submit it to Blottr.

Similar to recently-launched app Meporter, Blottr’s offering differs in that it comes out of the UK rather than the US. The UK company raised £1m investment in May.

Founder Adam Baker said in a release:

The Blottr app has the potential to fundamentally change the way news is gathered and reported. The UK has the highest number of smartphone users in Europe at 11m, and growing.

Over time, we hope a high preponderance of smartphone users will be using the Blottr app to report news they are witnessing from the scene.

Baker added: “We hope this will be the catalyst for millions of ordinary people to become citizen journalists and through our app, we expect to create a powerful network of people and content that will transform the ability to break news as it happens.”

Jon Anthony, leading the build, said: “One of the biggest challenges we faced when architecting the app was enabling real-time integration with our CMS. The app integrates fully with the user layer of our CMS, allowing stories to be posted directly to the site and viewed straight away on both mobile and web.”

Live video streaming will be introduced in the coming months.

Citizen journalism site expands after getting £1 million funding

UK citizen journalism site Blottr.com is to expand into five new cities this month, as the company behind the site celebrates securing funding of £1 million.

The platform, founded by Adam Baker, enables users to create and break news stories, as well as contribute towards other peoples’ posts. The company this week closed a round of funding by Mark Pearson, as TechCrunch reported yesterday

Pearson has so far invested £250,000 into the site, with the remaining £750,000 to follow providing the business meets certain “milestones”, such as increasing traffic and engagement with the audience.

Today Baker told Journalism.co.uk the site will be expanding into five new cities in the next couple of weeks: Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Edinburgh and Manchester. The plan to expand was already in motion before the funding came through, but he added that the financial boost “definitely helped it”.

As part of the expansion, the site is undergoing a redesign to include the added functionality to enable users to add content to their own pages for areas not currently catered for. Blottr is also planning on launching a free iPhone app next week, which will enable users to report on events from the ground using the platform.

Baker said the next step would be to monetise the platform, such as by licensing it out to publishers and media organisations interested in integrating user generated content.

We’ve got a product that does a number of things that publishers and media companies want. In internal conversations they say ‘we know we need to get in user generated content’ but there are a whole bunch of legal issues, and then the other ongoing conversation is how do we make more money and how do we get more unique content?

With the platform they can start to deeply build their audience, get really good content that’s unique to them and then they get pages that they can start to monetise.

Baker added that the US market “is definitely on the radar” but that for now the focus is on the UK and Europe.

TechCrunch: Can citizen journalism work in the UK? Blottr thinks it has the formula

TechCruch reports on a new tool for citizen journalism: Blottr. It’s described as “a mix of collaborative publishing, ‘authentication algorithm’ and revenue sharing”.

Anyone can sign-up and begin writing a news story or making revisions to an existing one, including adding photos or video. Stories are categorised and users are asked to pinpoint the location relevant to the story on a map. Wiki-style, each story has a revision history (to cover the full cycle of an event) and a list of contributors but it’s the ‘authentication algorithm’ that Blottr says make it stand out from other Citizen Journalism offerings. It attributes credibility to each story based on factors like how “influential” the author is on Blottr, how many other people have contributed to the story and how many times its been shared on Facebook and Twitter or been bookmarked.

Full post on TechCrunch at this link