Archive for the ‘business’ category

Digital Journal launches iPad and PlayBook apps powered by Polar Mobile

September 20th, 2011

Digital Journal, a global digital media network with contributors in more than 200 countries, has launched two free news apps for the Apple iPad and BlackBerry PlayBook.

Partnering with Polar Mobile, Digital Journal is releasing free tablet apps that feature breaking news, blogs, image galleries and user-generated content submitted by more than 32,000 Digital Journalists around the world.

“Digital Journal is excited about the opportunity to continue working with Polar Mobile to showcase world class user-generated content on mobile devices,” said Chris Hogg, CEO, Digital Journal. “With the success of our mobile apps on iPhone, BlackBerry, Android and Windows Phone devices, we’re eager to extend our mobile reach into the tablet space. Digital Journal’s tablet apps offer outstanding features with a sleek design, and the tablets themselves provide unique reading experiences we know readers are going to love.”

Digital Journal’s iPad and PlayBook apps showcase top news and commentary from tens of thousands of Digital Journal members across the world. The tablet apps also include blogs, special reports and image galleries featuring an up-close-and-personal look at communities, people and events from thousands of cities.

“We are excited Digital Journal has picked our tablet platform to further extend their presence in mobile,” said Jon Zifkin, Director of Customer Success, Polar Mobile. “Tablets will play an integral part in Digital Journal’s user engagement and monetization strategy.”

Digital Journal’s tablet apps boast an immersive and engaging reading experience with a stunning layout and social media features such as the ability to share content on Twitter and Facebook from within the apps.

The tablets apps also offer readers access to read and share Digital Journal’s Twitter and Facebook streams right within the apps.

Digital Journal’s iPad and PlayBook apps are available for download from the iTunes App Store (link) and BlackBerry App World (link) today.

This article was originally published on Digital Journal [Link]

Digital Journal launches Achievement & Badge program to showcase top talent

September 19th, 2011

Digital Journal, the parent company of Future of Media, today announced a new Achievements and Badge program designed to reward top members and highlight talent from the company’s 30,000+ members in 200 countries around the world.

Who is the most active member on Digital Journal? Who uploads the most original photography? Who comments most often?

Today Digital Journal is happy to introduce a new badge and Achievement program that showcases top talent and the most active members, giving everyone the chance to compete for top spots. Top contributors will be showcased more prominently across the digital media network and earn badges for reaching certain milestones and accomplishing various tasks.

How it works:

Digital Journal members can perform actions across the Digital Journal network such as posting news articles and blogs, uploading images and connecting to Facebook. Each member is given a certain number of points for completing actions and the people with the most points and who are most active can earn badges.

Also, every Digital Journal member is now ranked in order based on how active they are and how much they have contributed to the Digital Journal network. A leaderboard with the Top 50 members can be found here.

To view a person’s rank, points and badges simply click on their name. From here you can see how that person earned his or her points and who they are beating in the ranks. Points and Achievements are updated regularly to reflect activity in each calendar month and everything is reset at the start of the month to begin a new competition.

Digital Journal is launching its Achievements reward program with seven Achievements up for grabs, and the company will add more Achievements in the future.

Achievements

The following Achievements are being announced at launch (a full list of who has earned each Achievement is here):

(1.) Power User The most active Digital Journal members who have earned the most points this month. Points are earned from doing various activities such as uploading articles, posting blogs, connecting to Facebook and receiving “Likes” on uploaded content this month.

(2.) Top Editor Digital Journal members who have submitted revisions on news articles that were approved. These are the top editors with the most approved edits.

(3.) Top Photographer Digital Journal members who have submitted the most original photos this month.

(4.) Top Commenter Digital Journal members who have commented the most this month.

(5.) Top Blogger Digital Journal members who have published the most blogs this month.

(6.) Top Content Producer Digital Journal members who have received the highest number of Likes on their content this month.

(7.) Million Pageviews Given to Digital Journal members who have received more than 1 million pageviews on their content.

To see a list of how many points each action is worth, bookmark this page.

The most coveted Achievement is the Power User reward, an honour that identifies the most active and prolific Digital Journal members. Because the Power User spot is the most difficult to maintain and earn each month, Digital Journal will reward Power Users with the following additional benefits:

• A special Power User badge will appear on the person’s profile page.

• Digital Journal Staff will promote and profile Power Users.

• Power Users will be listed in the TopFinds roundup each week.

• Content uploaded by Power Users will be featured and promoted frequently via Digital Journal’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

• Power Users can participate in private chats with Digital Journal staff members to offer feedback, provide input on new features and maintain a direct line of communication with decision-makers behind the scenes.

• Digital Journal will issue a press release each month to showcase and promote Power Users.

• Power Users will be promoted and featured to new members when they sign up to the site as Suggested Users to follow.

• Digital Journal will also promote Power Users via the company’s sister site, Future of Media.

For Power Users, the above benefits will be given to Digital Journal members for one month after earning the Achievement (i.e. a person who earns a Power User badge in September will be given the above additional privileges in the month of October).

All Achievements will be reset each month to allow new people a chance to earn a badge for each action.

This article was originally published on Digital Journal [Link]

Digital Journal offers editorial blueprint for newsroom success

August 16th, 2011

My company, Digital Journal, issued the following press release this morning:

After receiving widespread praise for its Global Editorial Meetings, Digital Journal today released feedback to give newsrooms and editors a chance to hear about the types of content people are looking for.

Throughout the month of July, Digital Journal hosted online story meetings that were open to the public. The live-chat discussions invited reporters, citizen journalists, bloggers and average news consumers into the editorial process to help shape the coverage being produced by Digital Journal. Participants were invited to provide input on the type of content of interest to them.

Participants interacted with Digital Journal editors and management to express their thoughts on stories and topics they believe were under-reported; emerging trends and topics that needed more media attention; and geographies and local stories that were being missed by the press. Readers chatted live and responded to polls and questions, and that feedback was used to assign stories to thousands of contributors via Digital Journal’s content assignment technology.

“We learned a lot about what people look for in a news site, and we were surprised by some of the feedback we got,” said Digital Journal CEO, Chris Hogg. “One of the most interesting things we noticed was that local content matters to people, but those people are also likely to read local content from other regions if the right context is provided. Several people told us they will read foreign news coverage if it’s presented to them through a single content source, and they really enjoy reading about news from other cities.”

Several key themes surfaced in the Global Editorial Meetings, including:

  • Local content is widely sought-out by news consumers, but the majority are also interested in local stories from other geographies when context is provided.
  • Readers are increasingly turning to social media sites to discover new information, following content feeds from media organizations on Twitter and Facebook because they are often curated and timelier than a website.
  • Readers view their social media friends as content sources, often citing their social circles as sources of information.
  • When a major or developing story breaks, a large percentage of online news consumers turn to their social media circles to validate information and to get updates rather than turning to a specific news site. Readers will often follow a story as it breaks on Twitter and Facebook, and then look for validated information from news sources after.
  • Several readers want to see more investigative journalism and original work in the mainstream press and less content from wire services.
  • A large percentage of readers enjoy reading opinion pieces, even if it’s an opinion contrary to their own sentiments.
  • Most readers want to see more editorial coverage from regions such as South America, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Several readers said they hope to learn more about these regions beyond the typical headlines that come from these areas.
  • When it comes to content verticals, several readers said they want more business, science, and environmental news, regardless of the geography from which a story originates.
  • Readers want to see more photography with news stories, citing preferences for photo essays and on-the-ground reports filled with high-quality visuals.

In addition to these overall themes, participants also noted that while a lot of the news they read informs them about what’s happening around them, deeper context is often missing in news articles in the mainstream press. That is especially true when it comes to discussions on the debt crisis and global financial markets, readers said. In addition, readers said geographies such as Africa and the Middle East are often in the news because of conflict occurring in those regions, but they believe media outlets need to do a better job of explaining the various sides of a story, such as who is involved, historical context and why the story should matter to them.

“Digital Journal is well-known for giving a voice to anyone who wants to take part in the news-gathering process,” said Hogg. “Learning from our readers, as well as people who are just discovering us as a news source, helps us improve our news offering and I would encourage every newsroom to start experimenting by bringing their readers behind the curtain to involve them in the everyday process of reporting news.”

Full transcripts from Digital Journal’s Global Editorial Meetings are available on request.

About Digital Journal:

Digital Journal is a global digital media network with 32,000 professional and citizen journalists, bloggers, photographers and freelancers in 200 countries around the world. Regarded as a pioneer and leader in crowd-sourcing and user-generated content, Digital Journal is headquartered in Toronto, Canada. Digital Journal also consults news organizations on how to empower their audience to acquire content, drive revenue and increase engagement from digital media properties. For more information, visit digitaljournal.com.

Digital Journal commended for opening newsroom story meetings to the public

August 16th, 2011

My company, Digital Journal, issued the following press release this morning:

Digital Journal, a global digital media network with contributors in 200 countries, reported a strong response to its series of Global Editorial Meetings, ushering in a new precedent for how newsrooms interact with their audience and how editorial content is produced.

Online story meetings were open to the public, taking place throughout July. The live-chat discussions invited reporters, citizen journalists, bloggers and average news consumers into the editorial process to help shape the coverage produced by Digital Journal. Participants were invited to provide input on the type of content of interest to them.

“In an age where people go online to find content appealing to their tastes, it’s important for news organizations to adapt and ensure their editorial process aligns with reader interests,” said Digital Journal CEO, Chris Hogg. “By opening up our story meetings to the public, we provided a platform for people everywhere to tell us what they care about. We received a lot of great feedback that will allow us to target geographies and stories we know people care about.”

During the Global Editorial Meetings, participants interacted with Digital Journal editors to express their thoughts on stories and topics they believe were under-reported in the media; emerging trends and topics that needed more media attention; and geographies and local stories missed by the press. Readers chatted live and responded to polls and questions, and that feedback was used to assign stories to thousands of contributors via Digital Journal’s content assignment technology.

Several participants said they enjoy reading and contributing to Digital Journal because of the variety of content.

“I like Digital Journal because it gives me a mix of everything,” said Denise, a reader based in the UK. “I enjoy visiting a news site that offers me news I want to read from my location but also something else.”

Kim was also fond of Digital Journal’s diverse editorial mix. “I like a variety of hard-hitting news and politics as well as the odd news and light-hearted stuff, the same mix as Digital Journal provides,” she said.

Participants were very happy to have the opportunity to participate in a discussion about what is newsworthy and what stories they felt were not being covered by international press. Participants were also happy to have an opportunity to speak directly with Digital Journal staff members.

Pulling back the curtain and offering the public a chance to take part in the news-gathering process has earned Digital Journal kudos and praise from people all over the world.

“Thank you [Digital Journal] for great moderation, openness, and opportunity for feedback,” said Sam Halaby.

“Thanks for asking us what we think,” wrote Darren W. “Don’t see that often in the media.”

Full transcripts from Digital Journal’s Global Editorial Meetings are available on request.

Digital Journal will also be publishing an editorial summary to provide media organizations with an overview of the type of content average readers enjoy consuming, as well as input on how to improve online news coverage. The summary can be found here.

About Digital Journal:

Digital Journal is a global digital media network with 32,000 professional and citizen journalists, bloggers, photographers and freelancers in 200 countries around the world. Regarded as a pioneer and leader in crowd-sourcing and user-generated content, Digital Journal is headquartered in Toronto, Canada. Digital Journal also consults news organizations on how to empower their audience to acquire content, drive revenue and increase engagement from digital media properties. For more information, visit digitaljournal.com.

Google buying Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion

August 15th, 2011

Google has announced plans to buy Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion in cash. The deal gives Google a stronger foothold in the mobile industry, putting it directly in the handset business, and positions Google to better compete with companies like Apple.

Google CEO Larry Page, made the announcement on the company’s blog, saying the deal will “supercharge Android.”

“Since its launch in November 2007, Android has not only dramatically increased consumer choice but also improved the entire mobile experience for users,” Page wrote. “Given Android’s phenomenal success, we are always looking for new ways to supercharge the Android ecosystem. That is why I am so excited today to announce that we have agreed to acquire Motorola.”

Google’s cash offer is $40 per share which is a 63 percent premium on Motorola‘s closing price Friday, and the deal is expected to close by the end of 2011 or in early 2012.

Google says it has activated more than 150 million Android devices, adding 550,000 new devices each day. The company boasts a network of 39 manufacturers and 231 carriers in 123 countries.

“Motorola has a history of over 80 years of innovation in communications technology and products, and in the development of intellectual property, which have helped drive the remarkable revolution in mobile computing we are all enjoying today,” Page said. “In 2008, Motorola bet big on Android as the sole operating system across all of its smartphone devices. It was a smart bet and we’re thrilled at the success they’ve achieved so far. We believe that their mobile business is on an upward trajectory and poised for explosive growth.”

Page says the acquisition will not change Google’s promise to keep Android as an open platform, saying Motorola will remain a licensee of Android and Android will remain open.

“This transaction offers significant value for Motorola Mobility’s stockholders and provides compelling new opportunities for our employees, customers, and partners around the world,” Motorola Mobility CEO Sanjay Jha said in a press release. “We have shared a productive partnership with Google to advance the Android platform, and now through this combination we will be able to do even more to innovate and deliver outstanding mobility solutions across our mobile devices and home businesses.”

While Motorola will run as a separate business, this deal marks the first time Google has had a hand directly in the mobile handset business.

“Motorola’s total commitment to Android in mobile devices is one of many reasons that there is a natural fit between our two companies,” Page said. “Together, we will create amazing user experiences that supercharge the entire Android ecosystem for the benefit of consumers, partners and developers everywhere.”

When the acquisition announcement was first made, questions arose around how HTC, LG, Samsung, Acer, Sony Ericsson and Lenovo would respond to the announcement.

Google says says the reaction has been positive, quoting positive responses from Samsung, Sony Ericsson, HTC and LG execs.

In the acquisition announcement, Page also took a shot at Microsoft and Apple, saying the companies are “banding together in anti-competitive patent attacks on Android.”

“The U.S. Department of Justice had to intervene in the results of one recent patent auction to ‘protect competition and innovation in the open source software community’ and it is currently looking into the results of the Nortel auction,” Page said. “Our acquisition of Motorola will increase competition by strengthening Google’s patent portfolio, which will enable us to better protect Android from anti-competitive threats from Microsoft, Apple and other companies.”

According to Motorola, the company has 14,600 patents, with 6,700 patent applications pending worldwide.

Google says the Motorola acquisition will enhance competition, offer greater innovation and choice and a better user experience.