Reviews of On-Line Sites and Bibliography


Sims296a3:   Digital Commerce Group
On-Line Article Reviews
Anoop Sinha

Abbreviated Bibliography: 

Note: Many of the articles explored can be found by following the links below and then browsing through the articles availble on these sites. 

UC Berkeley Professor Hal Varian's excellent site about Digtial Commerce, including links to in an electronic publishing section WWW E-zine dedicated to the newest news about on-line content delivery.  ABC 20/20 Producer and Journalist Chistopher Harper's site including links his articles about electronic publishing:  Extremely important site which includes the winners of the best Interactive Newspapers '97 awards of February 1997.  These are some of the sites that were explored in the survey of available on-line content deliveries Another extremely important site including articles from the American Journalism Review.  Makes for excellent surfing about many articles about on-line publishing and on-line news delivery.  Has a competing ranking of on-line news sites
Online Publishing: Threat or Menace? 
by Laura Fillmore  

Though Fillmore's article is not about news delivery per se, it is about on-line publishing.  Her article has value in that it shows us some of the attitudes of the authors and reporters most content with regular paper, though increasingly finding technology essential to their jobs be it threat or menace. 

Early in her article, Fillmore writes, "There's no substitute for the sensual experience of reading a book."  She writes about her difficulties in her "collaboration with computers" and her comfortability with the "Paper Age."  She points out that there is a general sense of fear that since computers make publishing easier, since pushing can be nearly instant, there are new effects and new changes that will occur; the world might change.  But she does remind us that there were concerns about paper similar to those about computers now as far as the negative impact the technology would have on society.  No matter if it is positive or negative, she reminds us, "During the past decade, it's as if an electric current has been laid beneath that whole [publishing] process, and we've been jolted awake." 
The Daily Me 
By Christopher Harper 
From AJR, April 1997 

Harper's article describes some of the potential new forms for on-line news delivery. 

In various forms, the customized on-line newspaper takes users' preferences and filters the available database of news stories, creating a page of news stories that the user is likely to be most interested in.  Most of the time, this sort of customization is individual; it is possible to create a different home page every day for each user.  This sort of on-line newspaper is often called the "Daily Me." 

Harper also describes some on-line newspapers that essentially take votes based on total accesses, changing the composition of the front page as the day progresses and the readership's interests change.  Harper gives some specific information about the Chicago Tribune Internet Edition, one of the first newspapers to have reporters dedicated to on-line newspaper production.  Many of the reporters for the on-line edition need to carry around a wide variety of digital equipment: - digital cameras, digital video cameras, audio recorders - in order to produce a technically sophisticated on-line article.  This method of production differs greatly from most on-line newspapers which simply "shovel" the same articles to the on-line users as the paper users. 

As a whole, this site gives a good overview of many of the present forms of journalistic digital news delivery.  It concentrates on the future of newspaper and news journalism, and does not delve into too much detail about the converging news sources.  It is also timely in many senses.  In particular, the article is dated April 29, 1997; it has just been released. 
An Interview with Michael Kolowich 
by Christopher Harper, March 27, 1997 

In his synopsis of his interview with Michael Kolowich, one of the first developers and providers of push technology, Harper gives us some definitions of push technology and how push technology is changing on-line news delivery.  Kolowich identified four areas of concern for on-line news delivery users:  filtering, searching, browsing, and communing.  By the latter, he means creating communities of users interested with a common interest.  Other than providing a few interesting definitions, the article is not particularly useful.  It does not provide any commentary or analysis, even though it does label push technologies as the next "killer application"  for the Internet. 

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