News aggregators: The great timesavers

By ALEX PEARCE

It stands to reason that journalists need to keep abreast of breaking news, having a basic grasp of what goes on in the world around them. They need to be up-to-date with the worlds of politics, sports, entertainment and general happenings all at once. While the beat reporter has time to delve into niche blogs and specialty websites, most journalists have to be ready for any assignment at any time.

For reporters on the go or even concerned citizens with too little time to read the news, news aggregate websites readily handle this problem.

Rather than create unique content as it occurs, aggregate websites gather stories and updates from around the web. This allows for both a wide variety of stories being presented and for almost instant updates of breaking stories.

Of course, the first option that most people will turn to is Google. The Google News application of the main site acts as a custom aggregate site, allowing signed-in users to manage what stories it filters to the top of the list. Brief snippets and headlines are available, giving time-constrained readers a brief overview of what’s in the news.

Plenty of other options exist though. NewsOnFeeds.com links users to dozens of these types of websites, separated by content specialty.

Beyond major news aggregates, most email providers ably manage this task on their own. Comcast and Yahoo both provide this service, even to people without email accounts on their sites.

In today’s world, it is frankly unacceptable to be unfamiliar with the day’s top headlines. Thanks to the Internet, up-to-the-minute coverage from anywhere in the world is possible in large part because of news aggregate websites.

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