Futures Lab update #8: Vine, InfoActive, and lessons from innovative companies

By Reuben Stern on May 7, 2013 1 Comment Ideas

This week we look at how one newsroom is using the emerging social video platform Vine; how a tech start-up is hoping to make data visualization easy for anyone; and how newsrooms could learn from some of the world's most innovative companies.

PART 1: Sharing 6-second videos on Vine

A recent survey of teenagers suggests that although well-established social media sites (i.e., Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, Pinterest, etc.) are still popular with young people, teens may be placing less importance on them in favor of other tools for messaging and sharing. We look at how the news operation at KSDK-TV/Channel 5 in St. Louis is using the video-sharing app Vine, one of the emerging platforms identified by teens in the survey.

Other budding social platforms:

Although these may be of limited use to newsrooms, here are a few other choices for most important social networking platforms that were written in by respondents to the survey:

  • Wanelo - A social platform that lets users view and purchase products for sale on other websites that are posted/curated in Wanelo by other users. It's a lot like Pinterest but with the ability to click through and purchase anything you see. The name derives from "Want, Need, Love." They just released a 3.0 version of the app with improved discovery and search functions.
  • Snapchat - Enables smartphone users to take and send photos that delete automatically after recipients view them.
  • Kik - Mobile app that bills itself as "the easiest, most beautiful smartphone messenger around." It plays well with other social apps and operates via usernames so users can keep their phone numbers private.
  • 4Chan - A bulletin board system where users can share images and post comments without having to create a user account. Discussions are organized by topic.

PART 2: InfoActive

A start-up called Infoactive hopes to make it easier for anyone to display large sets of continually updated data. We learn about the app from Co-founder and CEO Trina Chiasson.
[To jump directly to this segment in YouTube, click here.]

PART 3: Lessons from the most innovative companies

Fast Company magazine recently released this year's annual guide to The World's Most Innovative Companies. Senior Editor Jason Feifer shares what news organizations could learn from three of the companies on the list.
[To jump directly to this segment in YouTube, click here.]

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Oh good lord

There is nothing in that video that suggests Vine has any value as a journalistic tool; the "serious content" she claims to have found - no examples, note - came from just checking hashtags. I can't believe Poynter would hold this up as evidence of some sort of "hey you should look at Vine's awesome 6-second clips as a tool to reach your audience" argument. Vine is a complete waste of time, given how easy it is to post, you know, 10 to 20-second YouTube videos, or even - gasp - 2 minute videos that actually have time to complete a damn sentence. Please, Poynter, stop encouraging people to shallow crap like Vine seriously.

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