The NewsiT Blog

Bringing people together around interests and circumstances they share with people they trust. Create, collaborate and connect on the NewsiT mobile platform.

Visit us at: www.newsit.net
Twitter: @newsitnews | @NewsiT_editor | @younewsit
Facebook: Facebook.com/newsitnews

  1. 3, 2, 1 Blast Off! NewsiT 2.0 App Launches

    Today, NewsiT launches its 2.0 iPhone and iPad apps.

    We’ve worked hard this year to improve wildly on our original ‘minimum viable product’ - and for those of you who’ve been with us from the start, you’ll notice some very big differences. 

    A new ‘look and feel’, a complete re-think of the user experience, and improved architecture of what is now social, collaborative, interest-focused, and a full integration with Twitter and Facebook.

    At NewsiT people come together around interests they share with people they trust. Threads evolve and update over time, breaking the fleeting nature of traditional news. Our algorithms bring Tweets into the mix, appearing within original crowd-sourced NewsiT threads. These Tweets are being mined and sorted for hyper-relevance to each thread, and you will see functionality improve daily - as our technology platform is increasingly able to discern - in real time - the validity, authenticity, relevance and factual accuracy of each contributed element.

    A couple of notes for NewsiT members:

    For those of you downloaded NewsiT’s original iPhone app (versions 1.0, 1.1 and 1.2), you will not get the new app as an update. This is a long story about Apple rules, and relates to the fact this is a native iPhone app and we did not, when submitted last week to Apple, support the iPad. But as of today, we ARE on iPad too!

    To get the new app, you will have to download it again from the app store. It’s free and easy.   You can get it here:
     http://bit.ly/OrGh9Y

    One other difference: You will need to login using either Twitter or Facebook.

    You will also notice that the new website no longer supports content contribution. As more funds become available, this will change, but for the moment we have invested in iPhone and iPad, our powerful algorithms and we are hard at work on an API/SDK for our partners to use on their iPhones/iPads and websites. We will keep you posted.In the meantime, please ‘kick the tires’, contribute to threads, start threads, invite your friends, follow cool people … and tell us what you think. Ask your friends to check it out.

    And meantime, we want to use your feedback to shape current development iterations. We are working hard on improving the back end functionality (in particular making sure the Tweets aggregate properly within feeds), adding other aspects like rating/ranking, game layer and more.

    Watch out also for the 2.1 and 2.2 releases coming very soon - you will see continual improvements.

    Thanks again

    Melinda and our awesome team!

  2. Countdown to Apple Release

    We’re so excited to give everybody a sneak peek at our next generation iPhone app. We anticipate it’s going to be available from September 21, touch wood…

    Now you can discover facts and friends around interests you share with people you trust. You decide what interests you - and who you want to invite into your communities - and we make sure you have relevant, accurate ‘news you can use’ and trust. It’s fun, easy, and here’s what it looks like!

  3. Attention Vacationers and Travel Bloggers!

    Here is a little more information about OE Travel Blogs, a travel site that is encouraging their readers to participate in NewsIT’s running story rating airline seats. OE Travel Blogs is a site that offers first hand travel experience from like-minded travellers. If you are venturing out on vacation or an adventure, be sure to check them out. If you are a travel blogger, OE Travel Blogs welcomes guest blogs and reviews as well.
    (See below for more.)

     If you are taking a trip this summer, be sure to download our iPhone app and let us know how your airplane seats were.

  4. Women Entrepreneurs Panel Featuring Melinda Wittstock

    Women entrepreneurs are a growing force in the economy but they face a unique set of challenges too. Join NewsiT Founder and CEO Melinda Wittstock and a group of distinguished panelists as they explore the issues and answer some of the questions surrounding this fascinating and important topic.

    The Milken Institute and the George Washington University Present
    Women Entrepreneurs:
    Innovative Approaches to Financing New Businesses

    When

    Monday, June 18, 2012
    5:30 PM - 7:00 PM

    Where

    George Washington University
    Media and Public Affairs Building
    805 21st St NW
    Jack Morton Auditorium
    Washington, District of Columbia 20052

    Click here for more information.

  5. For Immediate Release: AirGuide Begins Crowd-Reporting with NewsiT

    New York (AirGuide – Pyramid Media Group) May 8, 2012 – AirGuide has begun crowd-reporting by recently collaborating with NewsiT. AirGuide articles are being used by NewsiT to reach a new and growing audience capturing news as it happens with their mobile phones or the NewsiT Mobile App.

    The first in a series of NewsiT assignment starts with our series of articles on the best seats in the air. The story featured this week is “What’s Your Pitch? Best, Worst Airline Seats Ranked”:

    Are airline seats getting smaller? And what do you do when that big guy in front of you reclines his seat so far it pushes your knees against your chest?

    Help NewsiT and AirGuideOnline.com rate airline seatsJoin the story and answer some simple questions.

    AirGuideOnline is releasing its latest rankings of the largest and smallest seats on North American airlines. In the rankings for economy class seats, Jet Blue has the biggest seats in its A320-200 short-haul aircraft. Those seats were measured at a pitch (distance between seats) of 34 inches and width (armrest to armrest) of 18 inches.

    NewsiT segments can also be found on their Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/newsitnews

    This will be a long term collaboration, we strongly encourage you to take a look at their site and personally participate with any comments you may have.

    For More Information or an Interview Please Contact:

    Aram Gesar, Director of Content
    Direct Tel: +1646 770 2764 / +1561 777 2055
    Skype: pyramidmediagroup
    E-Mail: agesar@AirGuideOnline.com
    Bruce Potter, VP, Editorial Business Development, NewsiT
    E-Mail: bruce@newsit.net
    About:
    AirGuide for the Frequent Flyer Magazine & AirGuideOnline.com are dedicated to air travel and designed for leisure and business travelers. AirGuide is filled with tips and advice and provides everything global travelers need to know to make intelligent decisions before, during and after a voyage. AirGuide features weekly airline and travel news, information on great travel deals, plus dynamic travel articles and provides indispensable information on all the world’s airlines and airports from check-in to check out. Web site: http://www.AirGuideOnline.com
    AirGuide for the Frequent Flyer, AirGuide Business, CruiseGuide and Pyramid Media publications and content (news, reviews, advice and features) are delivered daily and weekly to more than 330,000 subscribers and to over 3.5 million though our syndication partners in more than 100 countries in over 20+ languages.
    About NewsiT:
    NewsiT is a mobile crowd-reporting platform for creating and sharing quality news of personal relevance. NewsiT believes people want their news portable, personalized and participatory. Our mission is to ‘reinvent’ news content creation by engaging citizens as mobile reporters all collaborating via social networks to produce multimedia coverage of relevance, quality and value.

    Visit us as at: www.newsit.net
    Twitter: @YouNewsiT
    Facebook: Facebook.com/newsitnews

  6. An update on our earlier Whooping Cough story post. Here is the full Senator Larsen clip with both the question and answer.

    Click here to jump the the NewsiT Whooping Cough Assignment.
    See the original blog post here.
  7. The Countdown Has Begun

    We are very excited to tell you that our new, improved iPhone app is very close to being released. Now you can see your own content and that of your friends posted in real time on ‘Trending’ - and you can more easily share via Twitter and Facebook. Expect multiple releases over the summer as we implement some exciting changes to the design and architecture of the app to make it more intuitive, fun and easy to use.

    Keep an eye here and on our Facebook page for updates and the pending announcement.

  8. Take the Middle Seat… to your future

    NewsiT News:

    John Chamberlain’s view from the least popular seat in the row. Read his story over at our main site: http://newsit.net/news/take-the-middle-seatto-your-future

  9. A Message From Melinda

    Keen to share our progress!
    The new iPhone release is just days away now - improved workflows, display of contributor ‘raw’ content, design tweaks, and integration with Facebook and Twitter. We can hardly wait to share it with you - and get your feedback as we iterate and improve our web and mobile user experience ahead over the summer.

    Here are some of the things you will see in the coming weeks and months:

    • Enhanced social functionality will include the ability to follow and friends within the NewsiT community, the beginnings of user collaboration around story threads and contributions
    • Story threads will combine ‘assignments’ and ‘latest news’ - we are building feedback loops in which you can find relevant information to you as well as people and sources you can trust around information that is important and relevant to you
    • Reorganization of the site and app around specific topics or ‘communities of interest’
    • Enhanced UI around game layer
    • And more!

    We hope to work to a tight two-week iteration and delivery schedule so you will start seeing changes and improvements. Keep letting us know how we are doing!

    NewsiT was founded by CEO Melinda Wittstock. Melinda is an award-winning journalist, serial entrepreneur and an evangelist on all things socially-networked and ‘gamified’. She is passionate about improving the quality and relevance of news and information, and has learned in her long journalistic career that there is more expertise outside the newsroom than in it.