"The event brought together approximately fifty technologists, publishers, and writers from a range of publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The LA Times, the New Yorker, First Look, Time Magazine and others. Our goal was to bring these industry leaders up to speed on the state of the technology and the standards efforts afoot, and to learn from them how annotation might play a role in the future of online journalism."
An important event, worth careful reading (and annotation). A few highlights:
"...Bassey Etim (New York Times), Amy Hollyfield (PolitiFact), and Andy Carvin (First Look Media) provided a sense of the landscape of annotation within the publishing world. What was clear from the panel is that comments are broken in more ways than one. There was much talk of trolling throughout the day and whether annotation systems could save us from the Dark Tetrad of personality that trolls bring to the Internet (Greg Barber of The Washington Post brought up a study using this phrase/concept in relation to trolling)... Both Genius and Hypothesis have shown that expert annotation is a clear value add to news content."
"By the time Stephen Levy of Medium took the stage, his platform’s slick annotation functionality had already been invoked more than once. There was a broad sentiment at the summit that for annotation to succeed in journalism at scale, journalists would have to become more involved in commenting and responding to comments on their articles, and Medium systematizes this by giving author control over what annotations appear on their articles publicly. If Schepers had said something to the effect of, “Medium annotation is great, but it’s only for Medium,” Christopher Glazek of Genius essentially made the argument that Genius’s “beta” offsite annotation functionality was Medium for every page on the Internet. Glazek, a journalist himself, shared an annotated, “DVD extras” version of his own New York Times Magazine piece, which included annotations from the subject of the article and a larger community of commenters (note: Genius has currently turned off their proxy service on the Times so you can’t view the annotated article that way). With very much the same technology as Hypothesis (extension, bookmarklet, proxy), Genius, in Glazek’s words, wants to be both Facebook and Wikipedia for every page on the Internet–both a commentary and an encyclopedia layer for the Web."
"Dan Gilmore, one of the final respondents who offered their thoughts on the proceedings of the day, took this idea further, asking the participants to think not only about annotation as an “end product”–that is as post-publication commentary–but as “part of the process” of news publishing itself. What, for example, is the role of annotation in news gathering? Could we imagine new production as iterative, including the annotations of the public during the process or journalistic composition? And how might annotations become news themselves, that is embedded within articles by journalists? It seems a shock to the system to imagine writers and readers as collaborators in the production of the news, but perhaps its the revival that online journalism needs."