Journalism is the activities of gathering, evaluating, creating, and news and information delivery. It requires verification, accuracy, and creativity. The recent development of communication and mobile technology made the process more efficient and influential. The evolution does not stop there. The emergence of Big Data may once again alter the game rules of journalism.
Big Data and Article Screening System
Lifehack is a leading online media. It produces articles daily, which about making things easier and better in every aspect. It provides practical and adaptable knowledge dedicated to improving Health, happiness, productivity, relationships.
The monthly page views of Lifehack in 2017 exceeded 20 million. It has over 1 million followers on Facebook. However, the company has only a dozen people operating, most of which are IT programmers. Leon is the founder of Lifehack. He chose English as the language of the online media at the beginning, therefore the readers extended to English speakers worldwide.
Leon used Big Data to further expand Lifehack. Leon had a programmer created an “Article Screening Automatic System.’’ It monitored the vastly updated articles on more than 200 of the world’s most popular online media. It estimated the popularity of each article, by calculating the number of Like and Share in social media. The system highlighted the articles automatically once it qualified.
The editor Anna was responsible to interpret the results. She grasped and studied the themes, structure, and style of those popular articles. She anglicized them and integrated a manuscript, then sent out to their writers. The manuscript was more like a guiding book, which includes the suggestions on writing directions, styles, and keywords. It adopted the Big Data concept gathering mass data from the internet. It spotted out successful popular articles automatically, which reduced labor force. We called it Data Driven Journalism.
SEO Results Supervisor: Robot
Lifehack further developed a ‘Robot’ system for internal supervising and analysis purposes. Robot monitored the SEO ’‘search engine optimization’’ results and scored them based on their popularity. The good or bad standard toward an article was subjective. The Robot made it an evaluable and objective scoring system. Lifehack exploited the A/B choice to determine the best writing scheme. Lifehack published A and B version under the same topic, then Robot compared the SEO results. Journalism shift from editor-driven to data-driven. The change is controversial. Some argue that themes and style are being influenced by Big Data, which endanger creativity and diversity. Let’s see some headlines we can find in Lifehack.
‘’ 7 Simple Hacks To Make Your Days In The Kitchen Easier、10 Effective Leg Exercises You Can Do On The Couch、7 Easy Body Language Tricks to Help You Get Over Anger and Get You Back to Feeling Great and etc.’’
Above headline’s style are quite similar. Styles become singular and dull.
The consequence of data-driven journalism is that labor is being replaced by AI. Bad news for employees but absolutely good news to entrepreneurs. An automatically accurate system brings insights on customer’s interest. It allows understanding the demands of your market while improving your work to satisfy the needs of customers.