Thing 8 2014: Storify and other tools

We’ve covered quite a lot this week already, so this final post is a bit more of a fun one. We’ll take a quick look at tools that let you aggregate and share information from other social media and online sources, starting with Storify.

Storify is a way of bringing together content from across the web to create ‘social stories’, which you can then share. It’s an easy way to combine different media on a particular subject – say, a conference or an event – in a nice, embeddable format. As an example,here’s a Storify I made our 2012 23 Things Twitter chat, which follows the online discussion through the various questions posed. You’ll see it includes blog posts as well as tweets, and I’ve annotated it with some notes and headings. Storify can pull information from news outlets, websites, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and more. Take a look at the featured stories on the Storify homepage and see what it can do.

You can sign into Storify using your Facebook or Twitter account (or your email if that’s easier). Once you’re signed in, it’s easy to get started. Use the button at the top to ‘Create a story’. You’ll be asked to add a title (‘headline’) and an optional description, then you can use the icons in the right-hand-side column to search various media (Twitter, Google, Facebook, etc.) for content. You can drag any items you want to include over onto your story on the left, and drag them around to reorder as you like (if you want more info, Storify provides detailed instructions). When you’re happy with what you’ve made, click ‘Publish’ (you can also save for later), and you’re done! You can get a link to embed your story on a website, share it via social media or email, or simply give others the link to visit.

There are other tools that allow you to aggregate and publish information from various sources., for example, allows you to create online newspapers of stories and links (there’s a great quick guide on the website). allows you to do the same thing – see help for info).

Blog post
Spend some time exploring these tools and stories/papers generated by them. Compare them – can you see them being used for different purposes? Is one easier to read then the other? What might you use them for? Tag your post ‘Thing 8’.

Further reading

3 thoughts on “Thing 8 2014: Storify and other tools

  1. I’m not convinced. Using Scoop is playing to weaknesses as much as it is strengths. okay, so supplement learning, don’t replace it. Extend students, don’t pander to popularism. To use a cliché – horses for courses, so why use a Shetland pony when a work horse is required?

  2. Here I go again….Moan, moan, moan.
    I’m sure if I followed popular culture and wanted to know what my favourite celebrity had for breakfast, I’d love Facebook. Since I don’t and I don’t have any celebrity faves I need to know need to know simply EVERYTHING about, I feel my use of the service is limited.
    It might be a way to package resources for students – sugar coating and all, and a way of sharing information, but hey, I love a good-old email.
    Can anyone tell me why I need facebook when there are things like homepages?
    I’m mastering the tech – easy-peasy, but my poor ancient mindset is having problems grasping ‘WHY???’ What makes it better than more traditional electronic methods of communication? Or even a telephone for that matter? Don’t worry I won’t mention quills and parchment.
    PS I have a Facebook account I use to teach people how to use facebook. Ironic isn’t it.

    • It’s not moaning to question tools! I think it’s important to remember though that even if you don’t use a tool yourself, others do – for instance, statistics show that the average open rate of an email at universities hovers in the 20% area, and many students (and researchers!) get messages more quickly and possibly more effectively via other formats. It doesn’t have to be sugar coating if you’re using the most effective tool to reach people in the most effective way. It’s not necessarily better, but they ‘why’ is simply that it’s a matter of using what the majority uses.

Leave a Reply