We wrote about RebelMouse back in June when it launched as a curation site for various social streams - mostly Twitter, Facebook; maybe Instagram, YouTube and Tumblr, too.
But now, six months into the life of RebelMouse, the Poynter Institute's Jeff Sonderman says the site has become - is becoming - a very valuable tool for digital journalists. (If you don't know Poynter, you should. It is not only the High Temple of Excellence and Ethics in Journalism, it has also become a very valuable resource and school for the transformation of journalism and information gathering in the digital age.)
In a piece published today on Poynter's site, Sonderman offers some solid advice on how to use RebelMouse in creative and beneficial ways and shows how some of the nation's sharpest news organizations are starting to use the site to be more productive.
We'll recap the piece here but go read it for yourself, when you get a moment. Relevanza's RebelMouse page is here. (After reading Sonderman's piece, we'll be taking his advice and making some adjustments.)
First, says Sonderman, use RebelMouse to reuse your live-Tweeting adventures.
"Feed your tweets or an event hashtag into a RebelMouse page, and embed it on your site," he writes. "It’s more elegant than simply embedding a Twitter widget. And compared to the nearest alternative, Storify, RebelMouse can be automated and its presentation places the focus on the content that you share, rather than the format in which it’s shared."
Another possibility is to use the site to curate a big story.
"You can feed tweets from a hashtag or a Twitter list into a RebelMouse page to automatically curate coverage of a major event," Sonderman suggests. "Or you can have those tweets saved as drafts that you pre-approve before they appear on your page."
RebelMouse can become a social media dashboard for an organization.
"KING-TV in Seattle uses a RebelMouse page to aggregate all the photos, videos and links from all of the station's Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube accounts," Sonderman explains.
He provides other creative and useful examples from TechCrunch, Salon (election) and, even, Patch. Perhaps the most creative, though, comes from NowThis News, which has turned its RebelMouse page into its own home page.
"All these examples take advantage of a few of RebelMouse’s distinguishing capabilities," Sonderman writes. "It can bring multiple social networks together in one space. It can make all that work you put into social networking accessible to people who don’t use those networks.It can be as automated as you want or as manually curated."
Resources are scarce for today's newsrooms and information providers, Sonderman reminds us. And curation can not only save time but money as well. Because, after all, time becomes money for many people working in the field today.
Perhaps RebelMouse will soon find ways to incorporate other platforms, Google+ and Pinterest come to mind immediately. It's all in the API.