What do they say it is?
“Yoosk is a news interplay magazine and community where you, the members are the reporters. Put your questions directly to politicians and celebrities and watch those questions gain support as other Yoosk members vote for them. Our pledge to you is that any question which reaches 100 votes will be submitted by us to the person involved and we will do our best to get an answer”
What do I say it is?
An interesting attempt of doing collaborative journalistic interviews. People choose what to ask and who will be interviewed, vote for the best questions, and then Yooks tries to contact the public figure in order to answer them – directly, or by trying to include those questions in the interviews this person is regularly assigned to answer.
What’s great about it?
The collaborative way of creating interviews is interesting. And the idea that you can come back later to comment on the answers obtained. The interview becomes more dynamic with the possibility of coming back later to discuss the answers given. The collaboration doesn’t end with getting the answers.
What could be better?
By asking people to suggest who is going to be interviewed and what will then be asked, they are risking not to be able to contact those people. Maybe if they contact people first, and they opened for questions, things would work out better. And faster.Another point is the broadness of the topics (and area) covered by the website. Do people really want to discuss gossip interviews? Narrowing the audience would be good to get more focused interviews.Also, it is not so clear what questions are already answered, and what is still under votation. Maybe different colors would help to distinguish.How is it going to make money?
Once they have content to offer, more people will access, generating page views, what will attract advertisers. So far, it is just a lot of people asking, and almost no answers. So far, there are very few ads, incorporated into the content.
Should I pay it any attention?
The idea is interesting. If it works, it can be used to improve the way collaborative work, at least for interviews, happens. The voting system and the possibility of allowing people to comment on the answers given make people come back to visit the website often, generating page views, and, more importantly – discussions.By Gabriela Zago
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Thanks for a very thoughtful review of our site. You made some very perceptive comments on what we need to improve and I’m pleased to say that we are already working on these…
You rightly suggest that at first getting answers (and therefore content) is going to be one of the biggest challenges we face. In fact we have set out to get a ‘commitment to answer’ from the public figures in the Yoosk features before we post them in the ‘Committed Features’ section, just as you suggest.
The next step is to systematically approach PR agents and spokepeople to get them to agree to answer questions according to a schedule that is convenient for them.
You also make the very valid point that the topics are a little broad. This is why we are currently negotiating with partners (and inviting proposals) to set up niche ‘Yoosks’ based on geographical areas and news categories. So in the future, expect to see politics.yoosk, birmingham.yoosk, media.yoosk, football.yoosk etc…
As a new format for interaction between audiences and public figures, Yoosk is more of a news application than a stand alone publication. Above all what we are looking for are partners that already have an audience in a particular niche who want to revolutionise the way they involve that audience in the news agenda.
We really look forward to hearing from anyone who likes the idea and wants to get involved.