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Quoted in Google News? Post a Comment 53

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the bidirectional-journalism dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Google News has a feature it calls "Comments From People in the News." (rude interrupting registration may be required) The idea is simple: if you have been quoted in an article that appears on Google News, you can post a comment that will be paired with that article. (Journalists can comment, as well, Google says, though none have done so thus far.) Since it was introduced in the spring, the feature has largely existed under the radar, with roughly only about 150 total comments having been made. Thus far, Google News has used e-mail messages to encourage people quoted in articles to submit comments — an effort to prime the pump similar to the process that results in the first issue of a new magazine magically having letters to the editor."
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Quoted in Google News? Post a Comment

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  • Google Quote? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ta bu shi da yu (687699) * on Wednesday December 26, 2007 @09:18AM (#21820688) Homepage
    So we now have a "Google Letters to the Editor" search now? Interesting.
    • by jesse285 (1145913)
      Well you have to understand that every one have to had a chance to say what on thier mind.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 26, 2007 @09:26AM (#21820712)
    How do they authenticate the identity of the poster? How do I know it really is the person quoted in the article and not some disgusting slashdot troll?
  • by techpawn (969834) on Wednesday December 26, 2007 @09:27AM (#21820718) Journal
    If someone is panted in a poor light in an article they get a chance to rebut. It's a neat feature but do you really think 9/10th of people in the news will take time to respond to Google's news page and jump through the needed hoops to prove they're who they claim to be?
    • No, but they may have some underling do it.
    • People paid to do it certainly will. I've already seen comments from campaign managers of presidential campaigns using it to spin stories their way.
    • If someone is panted in a poor light in an article they get a chance to rebut


      Heaven knows I like to ensure that my pants look their best but this is just advocating cosmetic surgery for the sake of it.
  • So (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    What is stoping me from saying that I'm some guy that is quoted saying something?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by User 956 (568564)
      What is stoping me from saying that I'm some guy that is quoted saying something?

      Probably the fact that you've identified yourself as "some guy that is quoted saying something". That might tip them off.
  • by garcia (6573) on Wednesday December 26, 2007 @09:38AM (#21820758) Homepage
    I realize that this is Slashdot and there are slow news days, especially around the holidays, but for the New York Times to be that far behind the times is a little ridiculous. I know, I know they are talking about how few people have been using it since it was introduced this spring but come on.

    Personally, while I read Google News several times a day, I find the feature completely worthless. I honestly don't give a flying rats ass what the people quoted in the article have to say. What I would like to see is related blog articles, with user comments, linked straight from Google News itself. Hell, Google knows what types of blogs I prefer to read (I use Google Reader), make certain that the blogs you link to are ones that I'm more likely to read and then post on.

    This feature, while obviously still "beta", could be improved so much more. I know you crazy engineers are out there reading this, just do what I said and it'll be a helluva lot more popular :)
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ricebowl (999467)

      Personally, while I read Google News several times a day, I find the feature completely worthless. I honestly don't give a flying rats ass what the people quoted in the article have to say.

      So...you skip the quotes in the articles? You wouldn't be interested if the person quoted posted a rebuttal to their own quote? Whether to say they were misquoted, misattributed or misinterpreted? How about if they wanted to add a more thorough analysis to expand upon the soundbite that the journalist used?

      I don't use G

      • by garcia (6573) on Wednesday December 26, 2007 @09:51AM (#21820810) Homepage
        Why? Because 75% of the time, when I'm interviewed for an article, I'm misquoted. I expected people to be misquoted and thus I take articles in the news media with a grain of salt. I also know that many times people aren't misquoted and don't like the result of the article as a whole and then bitch that they were misquoted in order to cover their own asses.

        What I want to see are related content where the general public can respond to the articles and I can see, from both sides of the issue, responses that are far more relevant than the two pages and misquoted whinings that appear linked from Google News.
        • Why? Because 75% of the time, when I'm interviewed for an article, I'm misquoted.
          Can we quote you as saying you were misqouted?
          • by hedwards (940851) on Wednesday December 26, 2007 @01:06PM (#21822082)
            Pretty much everybody is misquoted, Journalists do a cruddy job of getting it right, and in many cases they mis characterize quotes or paraphrase them. The operating assumption that people have when they read quotes in the news is that they aren't an accurate representation of what was said.

            Sort of like all the buzz about Will Smith liking Hitler. It was a preposterous misquote, that was more than a little bit insulting the religions that teach people to consider every person to have a little bit of goodness inside of them. The extended quote was an amazingly insightful statement about the human condition. Of course that version isn't of any particular interest, because it wouldn't keep people reading blogs.
        • by aicrules (819392)
          If only the feature could possibly live up to its potential...so far all I see are quoted people taking the opportunity to get more of the spotlight on whatever area of expertise they were interviewed for, rather than as a way to clarify a misquote. Getting everybody who was quoted and giving them a chance to say whether they were quoted accurately, and if not, what was misquoted would be great. Just having them expound on whatever book they're selling or wax poetic about something barely related to their
        • Why? Because 75% of the time, when I'm interviewed for an article, I have a sexual attraction to the quoter.
          I'm flattered.
        • by ooutland (146624)
          I've been misquoted myself, by a reporter looking to sensationalize something that I thought was already dramatic enough. I think the ideal system would be one where a reporter/news agency automatically provides you with a verification key, which you can use online in the event you have to append your own correction/rebuttal to their story after it hits the wires/net. The key ensures that it's really you responding and not some nutjob. Of course, that kind of oversight would require faithful transcriptio
        • What I want to see are related content where the general public can respond to the articles and I can see, from both sides of the issue, responses that are far more relevant than the two pages and misquoted whinings that appear linked from Google News

          Surf on over to Cnet.com and enjoy the "general public" responding with such relevance as, "M$ Windoze BLOWS!", or "Macs are GAY!". If that's not enough for you, then try reading "general public"'s posts about how great "Device-X-That-Isn't-Even-on-the-Marke

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by stewbacca (1033764)
      So the NY Times shouldn't post this story because it is old news to you? I'm no dummy on the tech front, but this is news to me and probably thousands of others, given the NY Times editors thought it worthy. It's not like they are posting a story about those new-fangled Microsoft Xboxes.

      To be even more contrarian, I think it is a GREAT concept to be able to hear more from the people quoted in an article, because the press has a bad habit of picking and choosing (taking out of context) their favorite soun

    • Er...wait a minute...you don't give a fsck what comments people might make about an article in Google News, but you imagine Google engineers will be greatly caring about comments random /. geeks make about an article about Google News in old media?

      >fzzt<

      Damn, that logical consistency fuse went out again...must use higher rating...
  • by Enleth (947766) <enleth@enleth.com> on Wednesday December 26, 2007 @09:46AM (#21820788) Homepage
    Journalists (not all of them, sure, but way too many) like to misquote on purpose, quote selectively, out-of-context or in any way otherwise changing the intended meaning of the quoted statement, after which the quoted (quotees? Is that even a word?) are left for the public to tear apart for something they didn't mean but the journalist wanted to put in their mouth - with no real way to correct what has already been printed, save for a few rich enough to take a legal action or just so rich to not give a crap about that.

    Such a system gives a way for corrections like that to be made public instantly and directly. Maybe that has even happend already, I don't know - but I think that's the most interesting and possibly useful outcome of this.
    • by ricebowl (999467)

      Maybe that has even happend(sic) already, I don't know.

      yeah that's happened. This is only the most recent example I could think of: Will Smith angry over Hitler comment... [cnn.com].

      • by Enleth (947766)

        happend(sic)

        Did I, by any chance, say anything about quoting recently? Oh. Well, crap.

        *Starts writing "happened" 100 times to get it better next time*
    • by argent (18001)
      I could have used that about, oh, fifteen or so years ago when some reporter decided to make it sound like this newfangled Internet thing was just for porn, and used a drive-by quoting to make it sound like I agreed. Of course the fact that people care about what refutations someone might post vie Google News is answer enough. :)
    • by geekoid (135745)
      I disagree.
      I think this shows a lot about how humans remember and repeat things. I ahve beenr eading about recent studies about human memory, and it's quite fascinating. A lot of things that are frustrating to me, and many others, seem to be wired into the brain at some 'level'

      People remember bad stuff more accurately then good.
      People seem to remember something the 'easy ' way, even of that means it's wrong.
      People's predisposition about something, or someone, influences how the remember thing.
      People seem pr
      • What you're saying can be boiled down to...

        (1) People remember new and surprising things better than old and expected things.

        (2) People are willing to believe stuff that is not well-supported by their own experience and personally known facts.

        Both are clearly powerful advantages for members of a highly social species living in a changeable environment.

        Obviously remembering something new and strange is more important than remembering something old and familiar, since what is old and familiar can be reconstru
        • by Grygus (1143095)
          I think the second thing ties into the first thing. You come back and say there are new scary tracks, but why should I believe you? If I am a healthy skeptic, I go and get eaten. If I am a gullible idiot, I take a spear and a friend and we eat well that night.
          • Right you are, and this is why the gullible tend to outlive the skeptical when both are part of a large tribe. Blindly believing what your neighbor tells you (instead of going to the considerable trouble and perhaps danger of verifying it yourself) tends, in a large community, to be a remarkably quick and efficient way to maximize your survival probability. This is, of course, why as a species we are so prone to it, to the dismay of libertarians everywhere and the glee of those who make their living in ad
  • When I worked as a reporter, the people I quoted sometimes remarked on the fact that I was the rare reporter who quoted them correctly. I honestly think that this was not because other reporters are dishonest, but because I type quickly and most of my interviews were over the phone. It was much harder for me to get direct quotes when interviewing with pad and paper.

    While I think this is good, because it allows for sources to respond to an article, I think it's important to remember that the sources themse

    • Wait, wait.. There are people, whom you interview, who expect that what they say is likely to appear in print in some form, but they won't agree (demand, even) to audio recording?

      I'd assume they're angling for a "misquote" and not even bother with the interview. They want to use you for free publicity, but cast you aside if it doesn't turn out to be the kind of publicity they want?
      • ...but they won't agree (demand, even) to audio recording?

        Bizarrely enough, yes. People want to dictate to reporters what will and won't go in the article. I had people wanting to insert "off the record, blah blah blah" into their comments all the time. In most cases, it was their opinion or grudge, and it didn't really matter, so I ignored it. But in one case, a police officer told me something and then said, "off the record," and proceeded to tell me the exact opposite. I was appalled. Rather than try t

    • While I think this is good, because it allows for sources to respond to an article, I think it's important to remember that the sources themselves may not always be truthful. If they don't like the way an article came out, they could say they were misquoted, even when they weren't.
      Well at least it is out there, so the reader can decide if he/she believes the reporter or the quotee.
  • This is a dupe!

    From Slashdot, August 9th, 2007: Google News Allowing Story Participants To Comment [slashdot.org]

    Ahem, editors still tipsy off the holiday eggnog?

    Happy Holidays all!

  • Since in almost every article, especially science and technology articles that require a broad understanding and depth to write coherently about, most writers mis-understand the interviewees (either willfully or through ignorance) this appears like it could be an excellent feature. A conscientious interviewee could fill in the gaps or correct misunderstandings the journalist missed and give us a more complete picture.

    This could then turn into an ad-hoc rating system for journalists. How many articles did
    • by techpawn (969834)
      Since in almost every article, especially science and technology articles that require a broad understanding and depth to write coherently about..

      Oh my god! Imagine if there was a website of news articles about science and technology that any random Joe who thought he knew better could put his comment about the story?! ANARCHY I TELLS YOU! It wouldn't last and the comments those misinformed couch physicists make would be all a bunch of self imposed lies or just random gibberish!

      I wish that was more sarca
  • (rude interrupting registration may be required)
    Not if you convert the link to its RSS version. Don't know how? Use this handy convertor [blogspace.com].

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