Twitter wants to be news publishers too with Project Lightning


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Twitter’s new Project Lightning plans have  been creating buzz all around even though it is still in it’s development stage and it may take many months before it is ready to be launched. But it’s still very interesting to talk about because it involves media, news and journalism.

Project Lightning is a plan where Twitter will allow it’s users to follow interesting events rather than other people. Basically, there will be a section on their app or website where if you click, you will see a list of events or happenings that you can follow.

For example, if there is a major opposition protest happening at Dataran Merdeka, you will see a curated Tweet feed of everything that is related to that event without having to follow the people who are tweeting about it.

But there you go, it is curated. That means Twitter plans to have a news team consisting of journalists and editors who will determine what what will be highlighted in Project Lightning. Looks like Twitter wants to be a news publisher too… following the footsteps of Facebook (Instant Articles).

It seems interesting because there are many people who get their news from Twitter (me included) and following people who are reporting on certain issues means getting an almost personal insight to things.

Check out Buzzfeed’s detailed article on Project Lightning here.

But there detractors too.

Many (me included) feel that this would destroy Twitter as a democratic tool that allows anyone access to to a world audience without any gatekeepers. Because if there will be a team that will curate content, then they will be making decisions on whether an issue or event deserves to be highlighted.

ComputerWorld has a list of interesting takes from different individuals about Project Lightning here.

And all this started taking place between the departure of former CEO Dick Costolo and the coming in of interim CEO Jack Dorsey.

Oh well, at least the revelation of the project made Twitter share prices jump a little bit by 4.7%!

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