I went to News Rewired on Thursday, along with dozens of other journalists and folk concerned in various ways with news production. Some threads that ran through the day for me were discussions of how we publish our data (and allow others to do the same), how we link our stories together with each other and the rest of the web, and how we can help our readers to explore context around our stories.
Semantic journalism is a vision for the future of journalism. As the writer works on her article, her computer would gather data on the matter, from pictures to other articles to assessing global opinion trends. It would read through the Wikipedia pages of a given theme and summarize key concepts. A semantic algorithm would bring a selection of the most authoritative people on a subject.
The journalist is left with what she does best: checking and analyzing the data.
That means avoiding the pitfalls of redundant news content. That means escaping the trap of writing about topics without having a clue of what’s at stake. That means interviewing people who do things rather than those who talk about it.
This article is the first of a 4-part series. We’ll explore semantic hacks for newsgathering, writing and publishing in the coming weeks. Continue reading