Co-curated News Magazine | Skillshare Projects



Co-curated News Magazine

Hi, my name is Joerie Mortelmans I am a 32 year old Belgian Pharmacist, I already have an active project in this class: Fantasize This, which I probably will not be updating anymore. I still like it but I don't see a long term future for it. Skillshare only allows one project per person so I had to create a new account. Sorry for breaking the rules but this magazine can not work without the help of the Flipboard community and users of this Skillshare class !

A little introduction:

I've had my own magazine in Flipboard since may 2011, way before the release of Flipboard 2.0. I basically wanted to create a magazine for myself, I created a new account on twitter ( @RT4Men ) specifically for Flipboard , retweeted the articles I wanted to add and viewed my retweets in Flipboard as a magazine, I had to create a second twitter account ( @RT4Men_tweets ) because not every blog or website had an automated twitter feed I could follow and retweet. After a few months Mia added me as an official Flipboard magazine in the Cool Curators section. I had no way of telling how many readers I had and got almost no feedback, but now I had a responsibility to keep my magazine updated.

It was great fun but even so it was hard to keep myself motivated after a year, finding articles was becoming harder and harder and Flipboard changed most of their sections to RSS-feeds and Facebook pages after the Twitter announcement, which made everything much more complicated. I had to tweet the link to the article from the website, RSS-feed, facebook page or youtube page, check to see if it worked in Flipboard, which often it did not, and retweet my own tweets when I updated the magazine. It wasn't fun anymore and I almost asked Flipboard to remove my magazine from the Cool Curators section a few days before the release of Flipboard 2.0.  

Flipboard 2.0:

After the launch of Flipboard 2.0 I quickly created a new magazine and started reflipping instead of retweeting, now I could easily add content from other Social networks and websites as well. I stopped retweeting after the release of the Android version. The Flip it bookmarklet basically replaced the function of the @RT4Men_tweets twitter account. I had to start from scratch again because they couldn't transfer my subscribers, but I was featured in the Arts & Culture section for two weeks and was supported in various other ways. I also asked my subscribers to resubscribe to my new magazine, so quickly gained a lot of subscribers. I don't think it would have been possible without the help of Flipboard.

There is much more social feedback now and it's easier to keep yourself motivated, but competition is hard and I expect to see a lot of inactive magazines in a year, even ones that are very popular right now. Most magazines will loose a lot of readers, especially the ones with broad and popular topics, even though Flipboard will continue to grow in the future. You can see it happen already... however if you just  want to create a nice magazine for yourself as a fun hobby it will not be a problem. But if your goal is to make a successful magazine with a lot of readers, it could start to feel like a job soon and it will be very hard to keep your readers, it's not impossible but it will take a lot of time and dedication.

Co-curated magazines:

Co-curated magazines are an entirely different affair though ! I really think they are the way of the future. Being in a team reduces the pressure on you and other members of the team of always having to update the magazine, it keeps it fun and enjoyable. Co-curated magazines will also be updated much more frequently, with better articles from more diverse sources and this as long as there are enough active curators. I thinks it's a more sustainable format in the long run...

I hope this project will help and inspire other users to start their own co-curated magazine. The possibilities are endless and I would be more than happy to contribute to other magazines myself.

This magazine:

The idea is to create a crowd sourced news magazine on Flipboard curated by you and me.

I would like your help to create a crowd sourced news magazine. Flipboard users who would like to participate will be invited as a contributor and can add up-to-date news articles to the co-curated magazine. Ideally we should have enough contributors to keep the magazine up-to-date 24/7, with contributors from various different time zones. Contributors can use all sources that are supported by Flipboard including twitter, google+, facebook, websites ( with the Flip it bookmarklet ) and RSS-feeds. My guess is we will need 10 to 20 contributors to make the concept work.

This will be my second crowd sourced magazine on Flipboard, my first was Social Brainstorm.

Social Brainstorm will continue to exist, but will be split in two. Social Brainstorm and The News Crowd which is the new magazine.  One magazine for serious and up-to-date news stories ( economy, politics, sports... ) and one for lighter topics ( lifestyle, design, culture,... ). All contributors from Social Brainstorm will also be invited to join this magazine. If you are more interested in joining Social Brainstorm please let me know.

The Project:

I'm going to take a much more structured approach to creating The News Crowd and I'm using this Skillshare project as a my blog and diary. I think co-curated magazines will become more and more important in the future and hope other users will find it helpful.

Contributors can pretty much add all content they think is suitable for the magazine, I will not censor anyone. I will only act as a curator, inappropriate content and non-english articles will be removed if needed, duplicates not as long as they are from different sources. When somebody adds the same article from the same source again, Flipboard will simply replace the old article with the new one and move it to the front of the magazine again and also replace the name of the old contributor with your name.

The most difficult task will be finding contributors and that's why I need your help. If you are interested in joining as a contributor please let me know in the comment section. You can add articles as frequently as you like and choose the topics that are in your field of expertise or interest ( economy, sport, education, health, .. ). 

From Social Brainstorm I've learned that the best way to contact potential contributors is to leave a comment on an article. There isn’t a whole lot of commenting going on currently on Flipboard, but because so few people comment, yours will be more noticeable and stand out. 

My main objective for this project is to create a News magazine covering various news from around the globe, updated 24/7.

2 July 2013:

 + Mortelmans Joerie: medical science, formula 1, news from Belgium and Brussels ( EU )

+ Keyur Shah: Global and breaking news

4 July 2013:

+ Robbie Zylstra: Startups, technology

+ Ryan Sprance: Technology, retail news

First articles are being added and it's great seeing the project evolve.

8 July 2013:

After a small identity crisis we're back on track, the response has been absolutely amazing. I wanted to start slow and gradually add contributors, but we've already got 3600 subscribers and the news magazine is far from finished yet and still missing large parts so that made me a little anxious. 

I have now invited almost all contributors from Social Brainstorm and contacted some other Flipboard users as well.

Finding more contributors is now my number one priority.

+ Ellie Tiley: Middle East, Europe

+ Cornell Weaver: Global and breaking news

+ Solidsnake26: Middle East

9 July 2013:

+ Tim Salau: Economy, Sport, Celebrity and breaking technology news

Will specifically search for contributors to cover Sports today.

+ Matthias Drywater: Sports

Will stop inviting co-curators for a few days and wait for everything to fall into place.

10 July 2013:

Searched for sources and a system to alert me of breaking news, trying a combination of Google+, Chrome and push notifications.

11 July 2013:

The numbers for The News Crowd are looking good, the number of page flips per reader is very impressive and much higher than on Social Brainstorm.

12 July 2013:

I've set up a circle on Google+ with the most important news sources, in combination with push notifications I'm always up-to-date about the latest news. Seems to work extremely well.

+ Oliver Burgold: Articles about the revolution, from Blockupy to Occupy, Finance and Economy

+ Jennifer Marni: Asian news

I've made a new magazine so readers can meet the awesome curators of The News Crowd and see the magazines they create:

13 July 2013:

Reset cover so it always shows a picture of the last article, it doesn't always provide a nice looking cover but I think it's more appropriate for this magazine, it's a test for now, I can always revert to manually selecting a cover page later.  

15 July 2013:

Very happy with how the magazine is evolving, this awesome.

19 July 2013:

+ James Skywalker: News from China

+ Jacopo Dettoni: ( Business ) news from Latin America

23 July 2013:

Will search for curators for news articles about environment and climate today.

24 July 2013: 

+ Alitalib: Environment 

27 July 2013:

+ Boris Aleksandrovsky ( Flipboard Intern )


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