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A.P. And others produce news center on Facebook for climate discussion

2 December 2009 No Comment

Technology.am (Dec. 02, 2009) — The Associated Press is partnering with additional international news organizations on an online hub where readers can intermingle with journalists covering the climate talks opening next week in Copenhagen.

global_warmingThe page on the social-networking site Facebook is intended at drawing fresh readers and getting them more occupied with news coverage online. Conventional media outlets have struggled to produce sufficient online traffic and promotion to restore revenue that’s been mislaid as readers and advertisers move to the Web.

The objective of the news agencies’ Facebook plan called the Climate Pool — is to generate a central place online to get stories and other substance on the Copenhagen conference. Besides links, the agencies will post blog items, guide live discussions among readers and journalists, and obtain suggestions on what to cover.

”The entire idea is not to endorse the news agencies but to unite straightforwardly to the audience concerned in climate talks and allow the audience to have a direct input into the debate,” said Jim Kennedy, the AP’s director of strategic planning.

furthermore participating are Agence France-Presse, ANP of the Netherlands, APA of Austria, APcom of Italy, Canadian Press, dpa of Germany, Kyodo of Japan, Lusa of Portugal, Press Association of the United Kingdom and RIA of Russia. The venture is being synchronized by MINDS International, a global news agency network.

The project at the United Nations-led conference will include elements of earlier AP experiments with social networking and live events. Previous summer, the AP used a Yahoo News blog and the messaging service Twitter to request readers what questions they required answered from inside U.S. Senate confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor.

Such projects present a complementary act for the participating news agencies. They would like to provide a convincing read, but they don’t want to contend openly with the other media companies to which they trade stories, photos and multimedia.

The AP, for example, is a supportive mutually owned by about 1,500 member newspapers, some of which will have their individual reporters in Copenhagen. Kennedy said the agencies will blog only behind-the-scenes information that wouldn’t normally end up in their main stories. And they will make use of the blog to emphasize and link to coverage from other outlets. The agency reporters might also post interviews with journalists from other organizations covering the event.

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