Journalists to be replaced by algorithms

I read a story this morning in Revolution Magazine and found it rather interesting. An online newspaper has launched in the US which uses a clever algorithm to identify news content on social networks and then republishes the news on its site. Revolution reports in its story:

Tewspaper is not endorsed or sponsored by any social network sites, but uses proprietary technology to filter through the large amounts of obscure data.

“We began by limiting the news to trusted authorities on Twitter,” said Jared Lamb, the creator of Tewspaper. “From there, we are working on an algorithm that can find additional breaking news from anyone on Twitter and other websites as it happens,”

Apparently Tewspaper automatically matches pictures to related stories to provide its readers with a better experience. However, when I looked at it there were lots of stories with no images at all and it looked a bit too messy. At the moment this site only covers news in five particular cities in  the US but there are plans to roll it out further.

I like the idea of aggregating web content but replacing software for journalism is just a step too far for me. To be honest I think this is a gimmick rather than a genuine threat. However, online media is certainly killing traditional media you only have to look at the regional titles which are now tumbling, I only hope sites like this don’t kill the quality of journalism which is out there. Personally I would choose quality over speed and ease of use every time.