Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Serra Media and Newsgarden



There has been a lot of speculation and interest in how newspapers will survive and evolve in the new world of potentially global distribution, as well as an increasingly hyper-local participation of it's readership through the World Wide Web. Business models are changing and competition is sharpening their local focus, not only through other media outlets, but also through blogs, feeds and exclusively online competitors.

In order to change and survive, newspapers are going to need to adjust and embrace new technologies and features that their readership can benefit from and they can leverage their strengths with. Serra Media is a software and web solutions company that has positioned itself to support that initiative.

Founded by Glenn Thomas, Samuel Wan and Mark Briggs (former online editor for the News Tribune), Serra Media serves as a "digital innovation platform for local online publishers".

Between the three of them, with Mark acting as CEO since September 2008, they have a great deal of experience building interactive projects for news sites and creating software solutions for rich media companies as well. Glenn has start up credentials and has worked for many years in rich media. Samuel wears the badge of having been a Microsoft Program Manager and seen through a full software solution from inception to release.

With one round of funding under their belts, this impressive trio is now launching the first beta solution developed under their collaboration.

Newsgarden is their first product and is a "map-based web application that filters the location of recent news items, blog posts and other information available on the web." One of the promises of the product, along with it being a community builder, is that it allow a news publisher to cover more news with less resources and serves as another market for advertising revenue. Hmmm, less resources. Sounds like a common thread among our regional papers.

The product is in use now at three Washington city newspapers, the Bellingham Herald,
the Olympian and the Peninsula Gateway.

If you want to see it in action, they have links to it on their site.

1 comment:

WritersHairClip said...

While checking out Second Life, I found it's own version of google life for residents of second life.
Check it out, this idea of mapping news virtually is going to get really big soon.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dP_UVOILkyw