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Online News Curation, The rise of the Echo-Chamber and the end of Debate?

by Scott Hoffman on September 10, 2010

A new crop of “Social News” services (reviewed below), that curates topical news stories & opinion from your Social Graph will change the way internet users filter information that gets to them. Think about this not to distant scenario:

In the future, internet users may spend their entire day just reading, listening, and looking at news and opinion that they already agree with. No dissent, no listening to contrary beliefs, just news and opinion that supports a user own belief system. Is this the ultimate echo-chamber for the world around us? What will happen to true debate?

Let me know if you agree of disagree, is online news curation, the rise of the echo-chamber and the end of debate?, Twitter, and FlipBoard are at the forefront of bringing this personalized, curated news and opinion to you. Descriptions and reviews from The Social Times of the 3 services are below: creates a newspaper-styled web page around your Twitter account. You can create a newspaper around a user you follow, a hashtag, or a list. These newspapers are updated once every 24 hours, and all of the links that are shared in that group are displayed as news articles. The great thing about is that you can define the content of your newspaper based on whose links or what hashtag you find most interesting. The layout includes sub-sections for topics such as Technology, Business, Politics and Arts & Entertainment, and does a pretty good job of searching the content for keywords in order to sort them appropriately.


The Twitter is a service similar to However, rather than organizing links shared on Twitter by topic, Twitter Times serves up your daily Twitter news in a two-column layout, ordered roughly by how many followers and followers of followers have re-tweeted that story. This gives you a good snapshot of the topics that are making their way around your Twitter-verse.


Flipboard is only for the iPad, so if you don’t have one, you won’t get to take it for a test drive. However, it is a more robust application than the previous two, in that it accesses both your Twitter and Facebook social networks for information. The data it gathers – videos, pictures and links that your friends and people you follow share – is presented in an intuitive magazine layout, and it includes the ability to like on Facebook, comment, and otherwise interact with the content rather than just passively presenting it.

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