Chief Technical Officer, Spot.US
Providing the Tools for the Journalist to be a Civil Servant
Who am I?
MA in Chemical Engineering, PhD in Numerical Analysis (ABD), Royal
Institute of Technology, Sweden
Heavily involved in the early blogging scene in Sweden - The Diary of
the Glamourprincess (biggest blog in Sweden 2005-2007)
Stanford Fellowship – “How to improve news coverage in Iraq?”
Covered on CNN, BBC, PBS and one of 25 highlights on Discovery International
Co-founder Allvoices.com, VP of Social Media and User Interface
Left the full time position in Allvoices.com in January 2010, currently CTO
for the non-profit organization Spot.Us
News is information.
Information educates, informs and raises concerns when needed.
There are other kinds of information that are not news, but are still useful
The journalist is a civil servant or server (the spider in the web?)
The journalist informs the community.
The journalist educates the community.
The journalist champions issues relevant to the community she/he serves.
Somewhere along the way spider lost its way!
R.I.P. : Traditional Local News Model
In the old model, local coverage meant more journalists…
More journalists means larger salary costs!
Two main factors contributed to the death:
The birth of blogs/blog platforms and local alternative news sites
shrunk the market.
The change of advertising and classifieds (i.e. Craigslist) shrunk the
As an executive, you will cut where your organization bleeds.
Hence local news coverage was cut as of its poor profitability.
Ex. The downsizing of Knight Ridder and others.
But local coverage is still important and vital!
Examples, Patch.com, local blogs and new local models.
Why is local news important?
The importance of local news is essential for democracy.
Local reporting has a direct effect on the daily life of users (let’s not
forget they’re people after all )
Don’t forget the tremendous importance of (local) investigative
Thing about your morning routine:
Morning shows mostly
Morning traffic, weather, crime, events etc.
Local news is just as important or more important in developing
countries where information is not as ubiquitous.
The opportunity for a new business model and
strategy for local news coverage emerges.
The concept of Spot.Us
Allows for a crowd-sourced model to finance local news
Brings the journalist closer to the community being
Creates a community around the reporting where the
community can participate in and support every aspect
of the reporting.
It also creates an audience of people invested in seeing
the reporting happen.
Make it easy!
Allow anyone to donate with and without a credit card.
Free Credits (i.e. Donations) via Community Centered
Allow anyone to fundraise off and on http://www.spot.us.
Spot.Us is soon releasing an API for the key functionalities.
Allows for seamless social sharing.
Multiple social sharing tools assist in the fundraising efforts.
It really is that simple!
The API allows any news organization to build their own fundraising
mechanism using our backend.
The news organizations will not have to suffer all the pains of micro-
The concept itself brings the community closer to the news
It creates a natural way for the journalists to interact and communicate
with the community.
The news organizations will report on the issues and topics important to
Community Centered Advertising allows any community member
to fund stories even if they do not have the funds.
Internationally this is incredibly important of several reasons.