Company / division: BuzzFeed
This is a great idea, and I hope we’ll see a lot more of this kind of innovation around news – we need it. One of the things I’m most struck by almost daily is the different universes that I’m a part of on Twitter and Facebook – during the day, I’m surrounded by mostly very liberal perspectives among the coastal tech people I follow on Twitter, and in the evenings at weekend I spend more time on Facebook, where the people I’m connected to tend to be more conservative. But I suspect many of us inhabit mostly one or other of these worlds, or tend to shut out those perspectives which are different from our own on social media, tending to reinforce our perceptions and prejudices. Not everyone will go for this kind of experiment – some may choose to continue to see a narrower view of the world, but we could all benefit from putting ourselves in others’ shoes and seeing the news through other lenses than our own.
BuzzFeed editor makes 2017 predictions – Business Insider (Dec 30, 2016)
Fake News is one of several areas where BuzzFeed has done excellent investigative work this year (harassment on Twitter is another), and editor-in-chief Ben Smith thinks we’re in for more in 2017 (I agree). The big question is whether 2017 will eventually see some sort of return to normalcy or whether we’ll see a growing divide between the realities embraced by different groups of people – sadly, I believe it will be the latter.