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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Msnbc.com acquires Newsvine - Business - US business | NBC News

Msnbc.com acquires Newsvine - Business - US business | NBC News

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  1. “The ability to deal with gigantic spikes of traffic is a tough thing for any start-up to handle,” Davidson said. “We can learn a lot from the people in Redmond.”

    New direction for news site
    The deal, which had been in the works since May, comes as a number of news aggregators and social media sites are eroding large media Web sites’ control of their distribution. More and more frequently, users come to individual articles on sites like msnbc.com and newyorktimes.com from portals like Google News or social media intermediaries like Digg; Reddit, which is owned by Wired.com; Del.icio.us, which is owned by Yahoo.com; and StumbleUpon.com.

    They are also being challenged by a robust “citizen journalism” movement that is providing a growing forum for non-professionals to gather and report news without filtering it through a team of editors and the bureaucracy of a large news organization.

    The purchase of Newsvine gives msnbc.com a foot in both worlds.

    “It begins what I believe is the revolution that big sites like msnbc need to go through,” said Merrill Brown, chairman of the citizen journalism site NowPublic.com, which boasts 100,000 “contributing reporters” around the world. Brown was founding editor of msnbc.com in 1996.

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    Although the deal will bolster one of his main competitors, Brown called it “a visionary thing to do.”

    “It’s a really good thing for citizen content and the news category in general, because it demonstrates [that] the citizen content opportunity and the growth of community in a big way around news content is not a niche,” he said.

    Newsvine independence promised
    Part of the appeal of intermediary sites like Digg, Reddit and Newsvine is their perceived independence from large, corporate news companies, with the promise of a purely democratic ordering of the news.

    Newsvine will now report to one of the largest such companies, but while Davidson said it may “expand a little bit” with msnbc.com’s support, growing from six employees to perhaps 10 or 15, he and Tillinghast both ... cont/-