Media Moves

Quarter of Bloomberg content has some automation

May 3, 2018

Posted by Chris Roush

Computerized storiesBloomberg editor in chief John Micklethwait wrote about the evolution of journalism, including changes within his news operation.

Micklethwait writes, “News is changing shape — with technology revolutionizing the way stories are produced. One change is automation. When I arrived at Bloomberg in 2015, I found a team of “Speed” reporters who leapt on company earnings and sent out headlines across the terminal, their triumphs measured in seconds against Reuters, our ancestral rival. Another reporter would then write a fuller “wrap,” say 10 minutes later, bringing the numbers together, saying how the market reacted, and perhaps adding an analyst’s quote.

“Nowadays, journalists increasingly prep their story templates to be filled in by a computer system called Cyborg that dissects a company’s earnings the moment they appear and produces not just instant headlines but, in a matter of seconds, what is in effect a mini-wrap with all the numbers and a lot of context. All this in competition not just with Reuters but with specialist news-scraping sites that serve hedge funds looking for microseconds of advantage. An arms race has developed, with the battleground moving to secondary data — like the number of iPhones sold in China — that can often move a share price more than the profit numbers. Today, a quarter of the content produced by Bloomberg has some degree of automation.”

Read more here.

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