A new service providing a platform for journalists to better interact with their sources was launched yesterday. NewBasis focuses on providing the technology, tools and design for companies, PR agencies, non profits and independent consultants or academics to interact with journalists and provide them relevant information and feedback on the topics they are researching.
NewsBasis was founded by Darryl Siry based on his experience working for both sides – he is a freelance writer for the Wired magazine and has also been a marketing representative for several companies.
Competing with similar services such as Profnet which offered by PR Newswire and Help a Reporter Out or HARO, which has been recently acquired by Vocus, NewsBasis claims to introduce two main features that set it apart from its competitors: it provides the means for accurate information to be brought to the journalists attention and it focuses on making the research and news reporting tasks easier, not on helping out business representatives to get their message heard. According to Darryl Siry’s statements, NewsBasis also sends out real time requestsand plans to build a searchable database of questions and answers and a system to rank sources based on whether they have been helpful or not.
By giving PR pros, company representatives or consultant the possibility to add footnotes containing explanations, clarifications or corrections to articles across the Web, NewsBasis makes sure journalists doing research for a certain topic will be prompted in a special tab that a correction or a detailed description has been added to the article they are currently browsing.
Journalists using the service can post questions or search for relevant sources on the NewsBasis marketplace. If they want to protect their story from competitors or not reveal which paper or online publication it is for, they can post them anonymously, also attaching a deadline to them and removing them as soon as the time to reply is up. In turn, PR agencies, company executives or consultants can search for questions in their area of expertise and reply or sing up for email notifications that will prompt them whenever queries of interest are being posted.
According to the New York Times, NewsBasis which is now in public beta has already raised 545 000 US dollars from Zelkova Ventures and other individual investors and is raising additional capital. The service is currently free, although companies and PR agencies will be eventually charged for using the service.
A more detailed review of NewsBasis services will soon be posted on Everything PR so stay tuned!