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September 16 2010

09:41

Times and Sunday Times sites launching new dashboard feature

News International’s paywalled newspaper sites TheTimes.co.uk and SundayTimes.co.uk are launching a new feature which aims to enable readers to keep track of stories of interest.

The Dashboard tool will become available to readers on the site over the next few days, an announcement on TheTimes.co.uk says.

We hope this latest addition to our websites will help you to personalise your news and get straight to the stories that are important to you.

The tool will notify readers when their favourite sections publish new articles and when a previously read article is updated. It also provides them with a history of read articles which they can quickly link back to.

Commenting on the new feature, paidContent’s Robert Andrews said the tool shows how the service is taking advantage of its online platform.

You can’t do that in print. It’s also somewhat unique amongst news websites, even if it is essentially a friendlier version of RSS-type functionality.

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August 11 2010

10:07

Mashable: Are social networks becoming personal news wires?

To celebrate its five-year anniversary, Mashable is producing a series of posts on developments in social media. The latest looks at the impact of social networking on news consumption and the idea that social networks have become personal news wires.

Following a discussion of online “friends” evolving into our news editors, writer Vadim Lavrusik rounds-up some interesting ideas about ways to measure source credibility in the future for greater transparency online.

Though news is increasingly social and user-generated, the persistent fear is one of credibility and a flaw in measuring a curator’s knowledge on or interest in a topic. This problem could be improved by enabling users to develop more targeted news feeds on personalized topics of interest, but also by identifying specific sources and curators of information as more or less credible than others.

One idea he discusses, put forward by Andy Carvin a senior strategist at NPR,  would be to measure “who is knowledgeable” about a topic being shared.

This could also include sifting sources based on whether they are eye-witness to an event or are experts on the topic, both of which add value in their own way, he said. Such a model could then help establish a credibility index among users as sources, helping consumers better decide what information is credible.

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