OLD Media Moves

Reuters launches Counterparties, a financial news link site

September 6, 2011

Posted by Chris Roush

Reuters unveiled Tuesday its new website, Counterparties, a linkblog for financial news and commentary, offering a curated look at the day’s big stories.

The site is being edited by Reuters financial blogger Felix Salmon and Ryan McCarthy and the name is taken from the title that Salmon uses on his blog to post links to stories he has read during the day.

Megan Garber of Nieman Lab writes, “‘It’s tags, it’s voice, and it’s my dream of just being completely source-agnostic, just linking out,’ Salmon told me. It’s exploring what voice sounds like in the service of one of the purest forms of information out there: the link. ‘This is, I believe,’ he says, ‘the first mainstream/legacy media website which is just external links.’

“I believe he is right. And that makes Counterparties not just an experiment, but also a hint, if a small one, at the trajectory of wire agencies as they evolve from straight-up ‘content providers’ into…something else. The past few years have seen the AP experimenting with ‘accountability journalism.’ They’ve seen Reuters itself expanding into investigative reporting and commentary and video, news-y and opinion-y and silly. One thing that those experiments have in common is that they emphasize, implicitly, the voices and the personalities and, finally, the brands of the news agencies’ individual journalists. ‘The whole idea here is to have real voice and attitude,’ Salmon says. ‘Basically, the page is entirely built by humans. It’s not some sort of weird technology algorithm. But it’s powered by a weird technology algorithm.’

“Counterparties finds most of its content via the service Percolate, which is similar to Summify except that it includes, in addition to Twitter feeds, RSS feeds. And: Counterparties uses Salmon’s own feeds, the ones that he’s been cultivating for his private use for several years now. ‘Counterparties is based on, literally, my Google Reader list of blogs that I read and my list of people I follow on Twitter,’ Salmon says. Which means that the feeds Percolate scans include those from, say, Salmon’s wife’s friends — ‘not because I have any particular professional interest in what they have to say,’ he notes, but because they’re his friends, too. ‘It’s a very personal thing.'”

Read more here.

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