Tag Archives: the Oscars

Econsultancy: Glam uses Twitter, makes money

Using Twitter to cover the Oscars with its audience, Glam found a sponsor for its Twitter widget – embedded below its GlamTV broadcast.

The title will continue to experiment with this model, but is not restricted to Twitter – a range of third-party apps and sites are being considered as part of a new feature for user-generated content, gWire.

Full story at this link…

Webby success for FT.com and BBC News

image of webby awards logo

The Financial Times and the BBC have reason to celebrate after they both won Webby Awards – considered by many as the Oscars of online publishing.

With nominations in over 70 categories FT.com’s Alphaville blog and the BBC News site were amongst a crowded field of winners as they picked up gongs earlier this week.

The Webbys are selected by a group made up of web, business and celebrity figures selected by the awarding body, the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences, with the people’s voice awards voted on by web-using members of the public.

Alphaville won the best business blog category, also picking up the people’s voice award in that category.

BBC News was the people’s voice winner in the news category (it also won the main award in the radio category) with the main prize going to NYTimes.com – one of a total of six awards for the publication.

Two of those successes came in the online newspaper section where NYTimes.com won both the main award and the people’s voice award, in the process beating of competition from Guardian.co.uk, Independent.co.uk, the Wall Street Journal Online and Variety.com.

Innovations in Journalism – CoveritLive ‘Humbly, we are forging a new form of journalism’

We give developers the opportunity to tell us journalists why we should sit up and pay attention to the sites and devices they are working on. Today it’s live blogging with difference, with an interactive community, through CoveritLive.

image of cover it live website

1) Who are you and what’s it all about?
I’m Keith McSpurren, president of CoveritLive, which is what we call ‘live blogging 2.0’.  It evolves live blogging from an interesting recap into an engaging event.

We have added interactivity features to live blogging, like polling questions and reader Q&A to involve the audience more.

We also made it simple for journalists to pull in rich multimedia (video, pictures, audio and even advertising) to create an event worth sticking around for.

Humbly, we think we are forging a new form of journalism.

2) Why would this be useful to a journalist?
People look to journalists for information and perspective. We believe there are many instances where getting that as events unfold is better than after the event is over.

Instead of reading an article about The Oscars or a Q&A session in Parliament for a few minutes the next day, why not get running commentary in real time from your favourite writers?

Why not have the chance for readers to ask questions or add to the conversation or answer polling questions as well as draw upon the multimedia readily available on the web during the event?

These are all good ideas but the real benefit of CoveritLive to the journalist is that we believe we have made it possible to do all of this without the need for the IT department or any technical training.

The ease of implementation and use is really what gets writers excited when they first try it out.

3) Is this it, or is there more to come?

CoveritLive is the first piece of software in the world to focus on live blogging. This is an evolving form of journalism and we listen very carefully to our users to develop better features all the time.

For example, next week we will launch a feature we call ‘Panel Discussion’ which will allow writers to have up to ten other writers all in the same live blog. Great for Q&A sessions, particularly with people who are spread out around the world.

Imagine the foreign correspondent in Baghdad online with the political reporter and two guests…without needing anyone to ‘set it up’ for them.

Cobbling together other expensive technology can do this kind of thing but by making it easy to do, we expect these kinds of features to grow the field of live blog reporting.

In the same way cheap, easy to use blogging software created a new form of reporting, we hope to do this where ‘live and in-depth’ is important.

4) Why are you doing this?
CiL is a commercial venture so we most definitely have a profit motive. That said the idea came around because I felt (after watching far too much television and yelling at it) that “there is more to be said”.

We think, with the right software, journalists can make their coverage better or add to what I’m watching on television. Politics, sports, financial news, conferences and even education are all areas where easy to use, low cost software can help the people who cover it.

5) What does it cost to use it?
The software is free to use.  This sometimes has an unintended impact where larger news organisations think, “It’s free.  It must not be very good or be able to handle someone big like us.”

That could not be farther from the truth.  It’s free because we are trying to lead the way with our users towards a new form of reporting. Putting price as a barrier to trial is not a good idea.

6) How will you make it pay?
We think our software creates significant opportunities for our users in terms of engaging their readers for long periods of time during a live blog.

Some recent data from an NFL football blog using CoveritLive demonstrates my point:

  • Unique viewers: 2750
  • Average duration on the live blog:  62 minutes
  • Percentage of readers 30 minutes or more: 51% (or over 1300 readers)
  • Number of Instant Replays clicked to view after the live blog:  4700

These kind of numbers create huge advertising opportunities for users interested in that type of thing.

We expect that value is worth paying for at some point once we have proven to be the software of choice in this new category.

Additionally, advertising supported software is a proven business model that will be more appropriate for micro-niche bloggers/writers who get the benefit of enterprise class software at no cost.

All this said, we are focused solely on being responsive to our users and growing usage.  Revenue will follow good ideas.

Innovations in Journalism – Hubdub.com

Image of hubdub

1) Who are you and what’s it all about?

My name is Nigel Eccles and I’m Chief News Junkie at Hubdub.

Hubdub is a news forecaster that allows users to compete in predicting how news stories will turn out.

The system takes all the users predictions and generates a forecast of how that story will conclude. Users that are successful in predicting news outcomes gain more influence resulting in the system getting more accurate over time.

2) Why would this be useful to a journalist?


Hubdub is a great way to follow a news story. Want to know if David Cameron will be the next Prime Minister? (60% no) Or, whether JK Rowling will announce another Harry Potter by the end of 2008? (90% no).

Or even, who will win Best Actor at the Oscars? (Johnny Depp 24%). Hubdub not only forecasts how running news stories will turn out but lets you track them over time. For example, when another government mishandling of data incident comes up, how does that impact David Cameron’s chances?

Additionally, as users can create questions around the news stories they are following Hubdub is a great resource to find out what news people are really interested in at the moment.

3) Is this it, or is there more to come?


This is just the very start! We are working on a range of widgets to allow journalists and bloggers to include Hubdub’s forecasts in their stories. This makes the story richer and enables you to more closely engage with your readers.
 Additionally, we are working on a range of features to let users connect with other users who have similar (or opposing) outlooks and opinions on the site.

4) Why are you doing this?

I really designed the product for myself. I’ve always been a very heavy news consumer but often I felt that the news just lacked a degree of excitement. I want to make following the news to be as exciting as betting on sports or playing fantasy leagues.

5) What does it cost to use it?


Nada, nothing, zero, zilch

6) How will you make it pay?


We are currently focused on getting the product out to as many people as possible. Once we have sufficient scale we expect to selectively carry advertising.

 Additionally, we are considering two other revenue streams, a premium offering similar to fantasy sports leagues and partnerships with publishers and media companies. We have already received interest in both these areas.