What do they say it is?
“iNorden.org is a joint Nordic citizen journalism initiative inviting bloggers, writers, aspiring and experienced journalists to contribute in the creation of a Nordic news portal.”
What do we say it is?
iNorden is yet another citJ experiment. The difference here is that it’s driven by a sort of pan-Scandinavian post-nationalism rather than profit.
What’s great about it?
Its wide network of semi-professional editors brings cohesion to the nascent community of contributors. A two-tier, pro-am-like structure like this allows for real brand image development while remaining very open to audience-generated content.
A fully grown website running on WordPress also makes great economic sense (and, incidentally, exemplifies the uselessness of Instant Journalism).
What could be better?
Its much-advertised modesty is palpable in the web0.2 design. The site’s activity suffers, maybe as a result. iNorden ranks 2 millionth on Alexa. (That’s still significant, even when we take into account Alexa’s 110% error margin.)
It needs better positioning, moving further away from traditional, old-media brands to develop its own identity. Looking at the stories in English, it still seems iNorden follows the same leads. Competing with AP isn’t a good idea when you have no capital to start with.
How is it going to make money?
It’s not going to and it doesn’t want to. iNorden is non-profit and proud of it. That gives the brand a lot of credibility at a time where everyone tries to milk users for their content. User experience could very well be enhanced as a result.
Should I pay it any attention?
Yes, if you want to check on the web’s ability to deliver fresh ideas. With all its sincerity and, maybe, naiveté, iNorden’s getting the success it deserves would prove, once again, that the web has crushed the barriers of the offline world.