Friday, May 03, 2013

Is This News Actual News?

The Sunlight Foundation recently unveiled a web tool they're calling "Churnalism," and it makes me both excited and sad.

It's a really awesome and simple concept -- if you suspect a news article sounds a bit too much like a press release, or like talking points which are a little too neatly delivered, you simply enter the url or paste the text into the churnalism machine and it quickly determines whether what you're reading is actually journalism or just some recycled pabulum.

On the one hand, this is super awesome -- if you pay attention at all, you definitely come across articles posing as news that sound suspiciously exactly like one of the people/organizations mentioned in the article would like it to sound. This gives you a quick and easy way to find out if it really is just repacked PR or is actually an independent opinion.

On the other hand, it's necessary that such a thing exist. Oh to live in a world where journalism actually means researching a subject and writing an original and informative take on it...

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