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FreePint BlogNewsdesk: tracking millions of pieces of information a day

Tuesday, 22nd May 2012 Please login top-right to be able to star items

By Scott Brown


Abstract:

What if you had to sort through 3.5 million articles and social media posts a day and try to pull out the most relevant items for your organisation? What if you then had to cobble it all together into something readable for your top groups and executives in your organisation?


Item:

What if you had to sort through 3.5 million articles and social media posts a day and try to pull out the most relevant items for your organisation? What if you then had to cobble it all together into something readable for your top groups and executives in your organisation?

It sounds like an absolute nightmare, yet some days feel like that for information professionals. In many ways, information professionals, librarians, researchers, media trackers, public relations departments and communications teams struggle with this very issue each day. And each day, we have more and more sources and content to contend with – especially with people adding immense amounts of content to the information universe via social media.

What if you had a tool that could do that for you more easily?

Enter Newsdesk. In January 2010, VIP’s Anne Jordan reviewed the original Newsdesk product. In November 2010, Penny Crossland reviewed Newsdesk 4, an updated version of that original product. So why review it again?

As I waded into this latest review, I felt like I was just scratching the surface of the capabilities of Newsdesk. The latest version combines two powerful forces: an immense database of news, print, broadcast and social information from the most recent 60 days, and nuanced, intuitive search and filtering capabilities.

While the full review provides much more detail on the depth of Newdesk’s coverage, its search capabilities, and its delivery options, the thing that really impressed me (and continues to impress me) is the sheer ease of using it. I’m a researcher – I know how to construct and refine complex searches. While I might want some additional search features, and more archival access, what struck me about Newsdesk was that even casual users could create searches easily, save them and then continue to track information, all with a few clicks.

It’s not perfect, but it’s pretty darn impressive.

VIP subscribers can read the review by logging into MyShop.

Purchase your copy of VIP Report: Product Review of Newsdesk from the FreePint Shop. Or save money by purchasing VIP No. 102, which also includes the VIP Report: Product Review of Alacra Compliance.

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Scott Brown is the owner of Social Information Group (http://www.socialinformationgroup.com), an independent information practice that focuses on the effective use of social networking tools for sharing and finding information. His forthcoming book, "Social Information: Gaining Competitive and Business Information Using Social Media Tools" will be published in late 2012. He has worked with libraries, Fortune 500 companies, startups, government organisations and individuals to help them understand and effectively use these tools for their clients, and to drive increased visibility and return on information resources. He has over 20 years of experience in library and information organisations, in public, academic and corporate settings. Scott is a regular speaker nationally on many areas of information work. He is also a professional coach.

You can follow him on Twitter at @socialinfo.

More articles by Scott Brown »


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