Quality Control

Looks like the news world may have a new editor-in-chief — Facebook. The social media giant now drives up to 20 percent of the traffic to news sites globally via its News Feed feature, which uses complex algorithms to recommend stories that may appeal to a user. All this from an insightful (and sometimes harrowing) article by the New York Times

At New Narrative we have the utmost respect for Facebook’s technical prowess, but think this does raise some troubling questions. At its best, the news, like all good stories, should not only inform, but broaden one’s outlook, encourage dialogue and, yes, provoke debate. It’s less likely to do that if it’s expertly curated to appeal to consumers’ already entrenched preferences.

 

After a (new) beginning

If you’re a frequent visitor, you may have noticed a few changes around here. We’ve given our website an overhaul that we think reflects some of the recent growth of this young enterprise, and hope that you enjoy the new look as much as we do. Expect a return to more regular posting on this blog, which will weigh in regularly on the joys (and sorrows) of writing, creation, communication and other worthwhile causes. We of course welcome comments and contributions — hey, even crushing rebuttals.

You’re likely to see the ‘brand journalism’ term thrown around now and then. Ordinarily at n/n we’re no fans of jargon, but here’s a brief primer on why we’re willing to make an exception in this case: http://new-narrative.com/about/whats-brand-journalism. Our friends at the Financial Times have also produced an interesting take on the phenomenon — it’s a tad on the cynical side, but as former hacks ourselves, we found ourselves frequently nodding in agreement: http://on.ft.com/ZPBR3T