Content curation is the collection of content created by others, then filtered through onea��s own point of referA�ence. The best curated content adds commentary that provides insight into the larger topic. Many tools exist to help you collect relevant content across a variety of online media, ranging from search engine results to up-to-the-minute social media shares. They vary from bareA�bones to full of bells and whistles. Remember a�� if the tool doesna��t automatically cite sources, dona��t forget to credit the original sources with proper citation. The folA�lowing five popular content curation tools are either free or have free versions with some limitations on features.
A full-featured content curation tool, Scoop.it helps you find items reA�lated to your topic, arranging them in a newspaper-like format saved as a URL under the Scoop.it domain. The free version lets you create up to 5 topics, edit items that you collect, and share via social media. To brand a topic under your own domain, have access to analytics, and more advanced options, you will need the Business version ($79/month). Scoop.it keeps links to the origiA�nal source intact when you a�?scoopa�? an individual news piece into your topic. A bookmarklet lets you grab items off the Internet.
The original intent of StoA�rify was a�?to help journalA�ists, bloggers and experts curate and present the best of the social Weba��s real-time content.a�? Although you can add pieces collected via Google search, primarily you choose pieces from social media sources, and then add your own edits and exA�planations to create a story. The finished piece can be embedded on your own site. Storify uses an easy drag-and-drop process from the search results area to the stoA�ryboard. A bookmarklet makes collection of source maA�terial easy when web browsing.
CurationSoft is very simple to use. It differs from othA�ers in that your stories are posted to your own website, rather than merely embedded, and can be edited in any HTML text editor. One can create a WordPress post, for example, and drag and drop pieces directly from CuraA�tionSoft. The free version only pulls content from Google Blogs and has advertising placements. To access content from social media and other sites, the Pro version is reA�quired at $59 per year.
A more basic tool, Bag TheWeb users create a a�?baga�? to hold items they wish to collect, publish, and share. Pieces are added by copying the URL into the add link box or using the bookmarklet while browsA�ing the web. Items can be placed in a different order on the page, titles can be edited, and pictures added. What makes this tool interesting is the ability to build netA�works of bags by linking individual bags together.
If all you are looking for is a way to collect curA�rent, real-time items in an all-in-one dashboard, the free version of Netvibes may be sufficient. The choice of sources to collect is large a�� you can even have your email show up on the dashA�board. The Premium version adds analytics and conA�tent curation, but at a hefty $500 per month (there is a 14-day trial). Team collaboration is also available at extra cost.