Posts Tagged ‘badges’

Digital Journal publishes March ‘Power User’ list in ongoing crowdsourcing project

April 3rd, 2012

My company issued this press release today:

Digital Journal today published a list of the 20 most active contributors on its network in March. The Top 20 list is published each month to report how Digital Journalists, bloggers and citizen journalists interact in an online media network.

“Gamification is going to be a pillar in the future for media organizations,” said Digital Journal CEO, Chris Hogg. “Having and using data in conjunction with a media offering positions a company like Digital Journal to be able to do things that have never before been possible. We can measure, track and report very granular data that has never before been accessible, and we are proud to be able to use that data to show off some of most talented media people in the world.”

Digital Journal publishes a Top 20 list in recognition of top performers from the company’s massive gamification project that tracks and reports activity of contributors across the Digital Journal network. Recording actions such as quantity of articles published, frequency of visit and how engaged members are, Digital Journal rewards points and badges to individual contributors based on the amount of their activity. The members who stay the most active in the month are then rewarded with a “Power Users” badge.

In addition to creating incentive for contributors to participate in the social news network, Digital Journal aims to showcase talent and create a level of transparency that gives an open look at how people interact with a news organization and how user-generated content is valuable in the wider news ecosystem.

“Digital Journal is seeing continued growth from contributors making their mark in social news media,” said David Silverberg, Managing Editor of Digital Journal. “Our focus on gamification has produced another excellent crop of informative journalism gaining attention with readers and publishers across the world.”

In no particular order, Digital Journal’s March 2012 Power Users include:

Digital Journal compiles data on a monthly basis and resets the points at the beginning of each month when a new competition begins. More info on Digital Journal’s gamification project can be found here.

Google News adds badges to identify content you engage with most

July 15th, 2011

I typically associate badges with anything that is gamified, Foursquare being the best and most famous example of using badges to reward someone unlocks an achievement.

But as of yesterday in the U.S., Google has added badges to its Google News service. The badges are designed to help you keep track of what type of content you engage with most, and what you most often click-through to read.

Take politics for example: If you continue to visit Google News and consume politics content, you’ll earn a badge related to that. The more content you read related to that topic, the higher level badge you’ll receive. Badges start at a bronze level and then move up to silver, gold, platinum and ultimate. Google says it has more than 500 badges available for almost any interest. Here is a sample:

Google News badges

As you earn more badges, they begin to show up on your Google News page and you can then use those badges to create sections related to specific content.

Badges are private by default, but you can share them with friends and use the +1 features. To get started with badges, Google says you need to visit Google News from a signed-in account with web history enabled and then visit this page on the Help Center for instructions. Google says this is just the first step of what is possible with badges.

I applaud the effort to be different, and think it could definitely help people create sections that curate content based on their interest. Readers may unconsciously know they have an addiction to Harry Potter stories, but once the badge pops up it may be a more direct confirmation. The ability to create sections on the fly based on interest, is also great.

That said, I don’t think this is a huge step forward, either. People will always drill-down into a site to find content they want or they will use a search function to get it. While the badges are good reminders and direct links to find content we want and like, I don’t think they’re much different than simply bookmarking a section you’re interested in.

Also, in its current form I’m not sure badges are the most appropriate tool to promote this activity; badges typically are rewarded to people for reaching achievements, and I don’t see this as achieving anything. It may promote increased activity among some users, but for those who truly compete to earn badges, I think this initiative fails to address the real underlying reason people compete to unlock badges. I will be watching closely to see how this changes over time. It’s a good start, for sure.

What do you think about the new Google News badges?