Help me trawl the internet
July 28, 2011 1:17 PM   Subscribe

At work, I'm supposed to compile a weekly list of "things of interest" on the internet which are related to our non-profit's mission. They need only fit into our general program areas, rather than necessarily dove-tail with our projects. Strategies, suggestions, hints for finding interesting things every week, without hitting the same sources or the same big news items as everyone else?

The program areas are "Criminal Justice Reform", "Immigration Court Reform"; "Judicial Election Reform" and "Community Justice". They're pretty broad, but I find myself linking to the same three or four cites every week, which defeats the purpose. The links can really be to anything well-written and new which touches on a program, project or problem in those areas. We link to it, add our 2cents, or tie it to one of our programs and move on.

I have a full plate at work, so I'm looking for strategies to make this task simpler or even just good places to look for links. I've got feeds for the Brennan Center, the ACLU, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, the Justice Policy Institute, SCOTUSblog and the Sentencing Project.
posted by crush-onastick to Media & Arts (10 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite runs a good deal of articles on those and related topics.
posted by Jon_Evil at 1:23 PM on July 28, 2011

You should use some kind of newsreader to bring everything into one place and help you distinguish the new articles. I use Netvibes and love it, but Google and everyone else has their own.
posted by dripdripdrop at 1:26 PM on July 28, 2011

You can automate some of this with something like Or just trawl a bunch of other links people have collected on similar sites. Do you use google alerts for news on specific keywords or names?
posted by mattbucher at 1:31 PM on July 28, 2011

Response by poster: I do use google alerts and a newsreader. Both tend to serve up the same stories from the usual suspects, however.
posted by crush-onastick at 1:44 PM on July 28, 2011

Best answer: I've been finding that using Tweet Deck with a few searches for terms I'm interested in ["digital divide" is a big one] gives me a steady trickle of news from not the usual suspects. You may need to get your thesaurus out and think of a few good words to have ongoing searches for [or people to follow who are doing this sort of thing] but I'm pleasantly surprised how off the beaten path a lot of the stuff that I find that way usually is.
posted by jessamyn at 1:55 PM on July 28, 2011

Best answer: I've been fiddling with TrapIt! and think it might have some utility for you. Check it out.
posted by Emperor SnooKloze at 2:13 PM on July 28, 2011

I was also going to suggest Twitter, thought a client like Tweetdeck. Just set up a couple of different searches (for both terms and hashtags) and check a few times a day. You'll definitely find more obscure links there.
posted by peanut_mcgillicuty at 5:10 PM on July 28, 2011

Not as pretty but i like Yahoo Pipes. I set it up to search for keywords on twitter, youtube, google news, NPR, and a couple of specific blog networks. Check it once a week and find things before the boss does - makes me look good.
posted by jander03 at 6:59 PM on July 28, 2011

Best answer: I found Google Blog Search (RSS fed to my newsreader) provided more variety source-wise than Google News Alerts.
posted by msittig at 9:04 PM on July 28, 2011

I also use delicious tags - you can get items newly tagged as a feed.
posted by clerestory at 12:30 AM on July 29, 2011

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