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3/27/2013
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Flipboard Update Lets You Create Magazine

You too could become famous (or infamous) for publishing content created by other people.

Google's 10 Best Gags, Pranks And Easter Eggs
Google's 10 Best Gags, Pranks And Easter Eggs
(click image for larger view and for slideshow)
Just as Google prepares to discontinue its Reader news aggregation Web app, social news aggregator Flipboard is renewing its commitment to distributing other people's content to its users. The company has updated its eponymous iOS app to allow users to curate and share collections of articles in the form of personalized digital magazines.

Flipboard presents news feeds from websites -- some of which it compensates with a share of ad revenue -- alongside images in an automated, easily navigable layout. It makes content consumption on mobile devices more visually appealing than many Web-based content aggregation services. The app surfaces content based on the interests of the user's social network and on the material offered by company's publishing partners, a business model that has led to more than 50 million downloads.

"Flipboard 2.0 is full of amazing new things," said Flipboard co-founder and CEO Mike McCue in a video. "It's much faster...the most important thing, though, is that now you can save and collect all the things that you find in your Flipboard that you love into your own personal magazines."

[ What's the Swedish word for "term a search engine can't find?" Read Google Objects To 'Ungoogleable'. ]

Flipboard 2.0 provides a way to collect and save articles in a collection that you name -- a magazine, in other words. This magazine can be public or private. The app transmits notifications when other users like, comment on or subscribe to the magazines you create. It also offers the ability to email links to magazines and to share them on Google+, Facebook, Twitter and other social networks.

Saving Flipboard content to a personal magazine is simple: Just tap the "+" icon while signed in to your Flipboard account.

But doing this within the company's community guidelines may be a bit more complex: Publishing is often viewed as a political act, and users who publish themed collections of articles may be held accountable for their implied or stated editorial vision, just as if they had written a provocative blog post.

To caution users, Flipboard has a lengthy Community Guidelines document that attempts to delineate the boundaries of allowable publishing. No illegal content is allowed, including content that infringes the creator's copyright. Also forbidden is content that promotes violence, drug abuse, or self-harm. Graphic sexual imagery, harassment, threats, spam, phishing and other forms of abuse are all disallowed.

Flipboard 2.0 adds a bookmarklet that simplifies the transfer of Web content to a user's Flipboard account. Other version 2.0 enhancements include the ability to comment on articles in the app, a Recommended Reading list, subsections in partner magazines and websites for improved navigation, faster section switching and optional Facebook Open Graph integration.

InformationWeek's March Must Reads is a compendium of our best recent coverage on collaboration. This Must Reads: Collaboration issue looks at how collaboration tools solve real problems, the potential for unified communications to expand collaboration outside your company, where the cloud fits in and more. (Free with registration.)

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