Apple hiring team of journalists for News app; a ‘jaw-dropping’ development says publisher

“Apple is hiring a team of journalists to run its Apple News service, part of a broader push by the company to personalise the content it selects and delivers to users of its devices,” Matthew Garrahan and Tim Bradshaw report for The Financial Times.

“The Apple editorial team will liaise with publishers, which include the Financial Times, New York Times, The Guardian and The Economist, which have signed up to provide content to the news service,” Garrahan and Bradshaw report. “A job ad posted for Apple News, which replaces Apple’s Newsstand and will compete with Facebook’s new Instant Articles service, said successful candidates would ‘identify and deliver the best in breaking national, global, and local news.'”

Garrahan and Bradshaw report, “One publisher that has had negotiations with Apple over the news service said the hiring of journalists was ‘jaw-dropping’ and ‘a real surprise.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We agree with Ken Doctor, an analyst with Newsonomics quoted in the full article that this is not surprising. It’s either algorithms or people and Apple is definitely looking for the human touch in Music, so it makes sense to go that way for News, too. Human curation, although subject to bias, works much better than algorithms.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Lynn Weiler” for the heads up.]

SEE ALSO:

Apple News to have human curation – and that raises issues – June 15, 2015
Flipboard CEO blasts Apple’s News app as ‘something that we actually shipped five years ago’ – June 12, 2015
Apple dumps Newsstand, takes on Facebook with Flipboard-like ‘News’ app – June 9, 2015

59 Comments

  1. That it is an algorithm-dropping development is big news to me. Turns out humans are still necessary when it comes to taste and composition.

    Meanwhile Siri still can’t parse the likes of “When is the next women’s World Cup game?”

        1. I agree. You would think it wouldn’t be too hard to just ask “What was the score of the World Cup game today?”
          Heck, it works perfectly for the NBA and NFL.
          Auto Racing should be a given too. Siri can’t even tell you who won the NASCAR race. Even though I have the Sprint Cup app with notifications to tell me, it would still be nice to just ask Siri. Sometimes the notifications don’t always work in a timely manner.

          1. Can you find it without Siri?

            During the 2008 olympics, I found traditional news outlet pages notoriously bad for providing me with a simple, easy to understand summary of results. I relied on wikipedia, which is of course submitted and edited by humans who processed the data for me.

          2. You treat some of the first uncertain steps toward machine intelligence with not nearly the credit it deserves. That Siri works well enough to tell you NBA and NFL scores–spoken in plain language–should be reason for either optimism or fear (depending upon where you stand on such issues).

            As it stands, you treat things that were unheard of outside of science fiction novels only twenty or thirty years ago as if they’ve been around a lot longer than they actually have.

          1. Sheesh! Put a little effort into your childish name-calling, kent.

            Let’s have at least, two name-callings, two obscenities and two completely empty and foundationless statements.

    1. Wait, lol, is the World Cup happening now? No clue! I cannot emphasize how unimportant the entire sport is to the U.S. outside a handfuls of a statistically tiny number of drunks at sports bars and foreign nationals/migrant workers and sports hipsters that want to show off how world and different they are.

      1. You seem to live in the 70s. Football (or, as Americans call it, “soccer”) is the third most popular team sport in America, behind baseball and basketball, and ahead of American “football”. Among professional team sports, football (“soccer”) is no. 4, behind baseball, basketball and American “football ” (massive businesses all of them) and ahead of hockey. One in three American households has someone playing football (“soccer”), figure second only to baseball.

        Absolutely nobody in the world cares about American “football” outside of American borders. Even in America, it is losing popularity (which can’t happen soon enough, considering the seriousness of the health consequences of the sport to its players).

          1. Not sure how you got to “American=backwards, silly, dangerous” from what I wrote; much less why you felt offended.

            I’m here because I like Apple and its products.

            On a somewhat related subject, American “football” is a dangerous sport; significantly more so than any other (with the possible exception of hockey). Increasing number of studies show severe and lasting consequences form frequent concussions experienced regularly by the players.

            1. Curiously, the most dangerous collegiate sport in terms of the number of serious injuries in a season is women’s soccer. It’s even worse than football.

              I say that as someone who loves soccer and whose son plays soccer–though his soccer injuries include a torn ACL, a couple of concussions, a hip avulsion fracture, and numerous sprains…

        1. Soccer (and yes, it’s called SOCCER, I don’t give a damn what foreigners call it) is not popular in the United States AT ALL, and it sure as hell is not anywhere remotely as popular as actual FOOTBALL. Anyone who says otherwise is full of pure shite.

          (Someone’s been making up numbers again, but liberals and soccer-living phags are certifiable liars, so that’s no surprise.)

          As for whether foreigners care about real football, that, too, is something that Americans could not care less about. Foreigners are meaningless to real Americans, and with good reason.

            1. According to the Bible, homosexuality is an abomination in the eyes of the Lord.

              Oh, and by the way, the Bible directs the Christian to hate what is evil.

              I know you don’t like that, but why should I care?

              If you’d like to show me where the Bible says I have to like soccer – the world’s most boring team sport (including curling) – I’d be happy to know about it.

              Good luck!

            2. The Bible doesn’t direct Christians to “hate” anything; it directs Christians to avoid sinners, to pray for sinners, and to forgive sinners because it is not YOUR place to judge. It is GOD’s place to judge. Your place is to go read that Book again, and see if you can comprehend it this time.

            3. “homosexuality is an abomination in the eyes of the Lord.”

              Only is the same kinds of locations as “stone your children if they are disrespectful or disobedient”. Can’t take one as your authority and deny the other.

          1. Not that this is really worth doing but for the sake of others; numbers come from researchers with proven track record. “Soccer”, (called football in 192 out of 193 countries of the world) is steadily gaining popularity in America, and there is noting anyone (not even people like bereanbob) can do about it.

            1. Oh, so it’s “researchers” saying that Soccer is more popular than football in the United States.

              Researchers!

              I think those “researchers” must have asked a bunch of dumb, illiterate, non-english speaking Mexicans what their preferences were and decided that THAT was America. Silly researchers.

              I repeat: Whoever contends that soccer is more popular in the United States than footbal – or even anywhere close – is full of pure shite.

              News Flash: Filthy foreigners do NOT know more about my country than I do. Shocking, I know.

            2. Data is out there. Verifiable. Various independent surveys.

              No amount of profanity from you will change the fact that football (a.k.a. “Soccer”) is growing, and American “football” is shrinking. In America. You are free to keep your head in the sand.

              I feel sorry for you.

          2. Hey hateybob, unless your name is Sitting Bull, Flies with Eagles, or something like that, you’re an immigrant. Your family being here for a TINY handful of years doesn’t qualify you as a “real American”.

            1. Dear John Smith:

              The first injuns came here from another place, too, and they polluted it with barbaric paganism.

              Moreover, I am not an immigrant. If you think that I am, then I’d strongly suggest you do something about your embarrassing ignorance and look up the following word: Immigrant.

              Happy trails!

  2. When they said news sources were going to partner with Apple for the News app, I thought they meant like Flipboard, where you would select the content sources to be rolled into a composite product. I assumed that those sources’ content would be curated by those sources, and the result would be just a bunch of redundant stories all rolled together.

    Now it appears Apple plans to curate the content based on the sources you selected. This potentially enters a bias into the product that unvarnished compilation from multiple sources wouldn’t have. Also, this list of partners doesn’t include my common technology sources. So, I’ll be following this new app with interest.

  3. A general rule (from long observation): the other guys are biased and we are not; moreover we can prove it if they will only shut up for a minute and listen to us lay out our version of the facts.

    I think that Apple has nothing to lose, because already they are routinely pilloried for promoting moral and political agendas as much as they are lambasted for mismanagement. Always under fire, they are. They’re used to it. I guess sleeping on mattresses stuffed with the long green helps a bit.

    1. They don’t.

      Or at least, there aren’t very many actual journalists anymore, though somewhere there must be some…I guess.

      For the most part “journalists” these days got into what they think is journalism in order to “make a difference.”

      And of course, by “making a difference,” what they really mean is getting scum such as Barack Obama elected to the most powerful position on the planet, plus all of the other society-destroying mechanisms they can think of. If it’s wrong, they’re FOR it.

      These will be the “journalists” hired by Tim “Anal Beads” Cook. This news app will be another one of those Apple initiatives that is forgotten about after a time. It might not go the way of Ping, but it’ll still be a waste of resources. There are already plenty of news apps. This fulfills a need that didn’t exist.

    1. They should probably just turn over the aggregation of news over to people like you that seem to think they know what’s good for the rest of us – just like a good little puke-worthy liberal.

      1. MDN, please get rid of this belligerent ass-wipe bereanbob. His barrage of insult, name-calling and obscenity drags down the site… and I’m pretty sure will affect your ad income.

          1. God Bless MDN! God Bless all the freedom of speech posters, who really tell it like it is! God Bless the freedoms America has to offer! (Except for you, you, you, and especially you…)

        1. “John Smith is the PERFECT embodiment of a liberal. A fragile, self absorbed, whiny, sanctimonious preener whose definition of “tolerance” is the tolerance of things with which he agrees.

          Moreover, he suffers from selective outrage. When Tim Cook advocates for depriving Christians of their Constitutional Freedoms, vermin like “John Smith” applaud. But when others oppose such violations of liberty, suddenly we’re oh so sensitive and, “Hey, let’s keep politics out of it, folks.”

          Liberals are, in their gnarled consciences, tyrants. There is one set of rules for THEM, and another for others.

          And people like poor, put-upon “John Smith” are so precious that they have to be shielded from the trauma of reading things that make them squirm, but which they nevertheless cannot refute.

          Grow up and get over yourself already, “John Smith.”

          1. boringbob is the PERFECT embodiment of a right-wing, so-called christian. A nasty self-righteous prick whose definition of “tolerance” is the tolerance of things with which he agrees.

            Moreover, he suffers from selective outrage. When people do things in their lives that have NO EFFECT on him, vermin like boringbob scream in outrage. Under the guise of politics (inappropriate on this site, anyway) and ancient empty superstition (inappropriate on this site, anyway), he spouts nothing but hatred and vicious nastiness.

            Right-wingers are, in their gnarled consciences, tyrants. Freedom means “freedom to do things and think how we say”.

            And people like poor, put-upon boringbob are so precious that they have to be shielded from the trauma of people leading their lives in ways other boringbob’s approved manner.

            Grow up and get over yourself already, hate-monger boringbob.

            Frankly, boringbob, I don’t give a shit how you lead YOUR life. I wish you could say the same about others.

            1. You actually had to steal my wording because you can’t develop your own formulations. Between your terribly clever “boring bob” thingy, and your thoughtless gainsaying of my valid points, you strike me as not altogether a bright or original individual.

          2. boringbob is a shining light on this forum… so noble and spiritual… following the teachings of His Lord, and teaching us all by his loving example.

            I especially like how boringbob embodies the core teaching, where Jesus said,

            “Love one another… unless the ‘other’ is liberal, gay, Canadian, poor, democrat, Hispanic, lying in a ditch, or thinks anything you think they shouldn’t, or has a lifestyle different from yours.”

            1. I’m with you, Average. Saint boringbob’s kindness and equanimity are really inspiring. His posts really make me want to convert to christianity.

            2. I don’t know how to break it to you, but the Bible is a big book and it has a lot more in it than just the cherry-picked verse your lamely trying to hide behind.

              Jesus said and did OTHER things also. So did his disciples. So did his Apostles. So did the prophets of the Old Testament.

              God rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah as a not very subtle way of indicating where he stood on homosexuality.

              Any questions, son of the devil?

            3. Ah no, boringbob. I’m taking the totality of the Big Book of Stone-Age Fairy Stories. YOU’RE the one who is cherry-picking… saying Sodom and Gomorrah is relevant but stoning your children, multiple genocides and giving your daughters to be raped isn’t.

              By the way, I still don’t have a reference from you for Jesus’ views on homosexuality. Is there one?

              And for other things Jesus said… you mean like these?

              – Shit on others as you would NOT have them shit on you.
              – Don’t love your enemies, be nasty to them.
              – Hate thy neighbor as thou love thyself.
              – Never be humble or gentle, never be patient, never bear with others in love.
              – Above all, hate each other deeply.
              – Hatred stirs up dissension. Express it at every opportunity.
              – Be spiteful.
              – Call others names and use obscenity, as thy Lord calleth others names and frequently useth obscenity.

  4. Perhaps Apple could make sure that only real journalism makes it to their App. Multiple confirmed sources, respected journalists, factual news and identified editorial content. Hmmm. Wouldn’t be much there nowadays.

  5. Looking forward to it – but not really happy about someone else a ‘blogger’ tellings me what to read.

    Anyone heard of the word ‘censorship’ at Apple?

    News should be a very personal app that let’s the users/readers decide what they should read.

    This is how its done for example on the BBC app – which I read every day.

    1. If you read the BBC news site along with other UK news sources, you might notice that the BBC already censors news.

      There have been many stories in recent weeks and months which scarcely get mentioned on the BBC site, or else get reported with a particular bias.

      As this is an Apple discussion board, an obvious example is how the BBC routinely casts Apple in a negative light and even when there is a good news Apple story, will still find a way to introduce a negative element.

      Having said that, I do approve of the way that the BBC news app lets readers opt for greater or less coverage in chosen categories, but quite a few other news apps do that too.

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