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Posts Tagged ‘nyt’

Which Tweet Wins? See If You Can You Out-Predict A Computer

If you work in social media, or any online media site really, for very long, you learn that it’s hard to predict which post or piece of content will go viral. That doesn’t stop people from trying.

The latest attempt? The New York Times has the details on a collaboration by three computer scientists who developed an algorithm that, with relative accuracy, can tell you which of two tweets to the same content by the same user will more likely be reshared. This is how those developers explain their project:

… [W]e take advantage of the surprising fact that there are many pairs of tweets containing the same url and written by the same user but employing different wording. Given such pairs, we ask: which version attracts more retweets? This turns out to be a more difficult task than predicting popular topics. Still, humans can answer this question better than chance (but far from perfectly), and the computational methods we develop can do better than an average human …

How is that possible? A huge body of data to pull from. In A/B tests, it predicts which tweet will be more popular correctly 67 percent of the time, compared to the 61 percent of tweets more likely to be retweeted that humans guess correctly, according to the NYT. Before you get too depressed, read the full article to see why your computer won’t be replacing you or your social community manager anytime soon.

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Then just for fun: The NYT’s The Upshot takes this idea one step farther and put together this fascinating 25 question gut check to see if YOU can beat their algorithm and predict with more success whether one tweet will go viral or one tweet will go silent.

It’s harder than it sounds! I got 15 vs. the computer’s 19. So what do you get?

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Tips: NYT Social Media Staff On What Worked (And Didn’t) In 2013

Ever wish your website could garner the kind of social media engagement the New York Times enjoys? Well, honestly, without as many followers as @nytimes (more than 10 1/2 million as of today) and as many boots on the ground — and fingers on the keyboard typing up tweets and stories to tweet about — you probably can’t. atnytimes_010814 BUT you can at least enjoy the fruits of their expertise and adapt their tips to your strategy.

Bite into this post over at the Nieman Journalism Lab where several NYT social media staffers chew on what they learned works in social media, based on last year’s top performers: If a tweet worked once, send it again — and other lessons from The New York Times’ social media desk

There’s some seriously great advice in this piece, beyond the tip in headline they discuss: Read more

When NYT Site Goes Down, Journalists Turn To Jokes

What happens when one of the most-trafficked news sites goes down for more than an hour mid-day and mid-week? Well, journalists and readers turn to other ways to amuse themselves with jokes and speculation about why the New York Times site was offline from sometime in the 11 a.m. hour to slightly after 1 p.m. today.

If you tried to load the page (which seems to be back up again now), this is what you saw:

The site is now, finally, loading for me, but I didn’t see an actual explanation for the lunch-hour outage there. But the Times on Twitter had this to say when the site was finally back up:

Also on Twitter, here’s a sampling of some of the amusing tweets that came through during and about the “crisis,” including a few from NYT staffers themselves:

And my personal favorites:

And related:

If you want to see a fuller recap, the Atlantic Wire has a nice timeline on its post: “The Day the Web Learned What It’d Be Like to Lose The New York Times.” And if you’d like to see a few more jokes beyond what I dug up, The Daily Beast has you covered.

NYT, Gannett And Others Join AP Suit Against Meltwater

Several of the biggest names in the daily news business joined the AP in its fight against online news clipping service Meltwater News this week. The publishers coming to support AP by filing an amicus brief in its ongoing lawsuit include the New York Times Company, Advance Publications, Gannett, The McClatchy Company and the Newspaper Association of America (which represents 2,000 organizations).

Last year, the Associated Press filed a lawsuit against Meltwater claiming the service — a paid electronic clipping service that monitors and delivers news stories on keyword-specific topics to its paying customers — violated AP copyright and competed directly against AP by illegally selling its content. Since then, the back and forth battle over fair use and what’s fair on the Internet has intensified, with supporters on both sides.

This week, the newspapers weighed in and filed an amicus brief supporting the AP (download the full PDF of the brief, which is worth reading). Here’s their take on the issue and what’s at stake:

It takes no friend-of-the-court brief for the Court to know that the rise of the Internet has been highly disruptive to the nation’s news organizations, as their readers and advertisers have migrated to the Web. In response, the nation’s news organizations, including the amici on this brief, have at considerable expense developed their own Websites and digital businesses to carry their news reports. These digital businesses are supported by electronic advertising revenue, electronic subscription revenue, and licensing income from other publishers and users and aggregators. None of these revenue streams can be sustained if news organizations are unable to protect their news reports from the wholesale copying and redistribution by free-riders like Meltwater.
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Snowed In? Read, Watch NYT‘s Avalanche Multimedia Package

On this holiday week, I’m out of town but still couldn’t escape the blizzard conditions blanketing the Midwest and much of the rest of the country. So I’m settling in with a story and amazing piece of multimedia from the New York Times that I bookmarked last week. It’s an absolutely beautiful and breathtaking tale of an avalanche in Washington state, both the events leading up to and the people involved in the event in the moments before, during and following the event. The reporting, the writing, the photography, the videography, the audio, the use of animations and maps, and the overall story design… everything comes together into one of the single best pieces of multimedia content I’ve ever seen. This story is what multimedia packages ought to aspire to be.

NYT Snow Fall intro

So if you’re like me, home from the office and snowed in for the day, take a half hour (or more) to browse through the beautiful and thrilling story, “Snow Fall: The Avalanche at Tunnel Creek.” It’s a great read and a great example of how old-school reporting and storytelling play perfectly with new media tools to take a story from good to great and tell it in a way online the Internet could allow.

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