ORB – Oregonian Research Blog

August 14, 2008

Popular Web 2.0 Sites Are Also Great Research Tools.

Filed under: photo,research,resources,video,web 2.0 — Lynne @ 12:47 pm

YouTube is widely known as a place to share funny videos. It is that, and so much more.

A couple of weeks ago, an editorial writer was looking for a transcript of a recent Bloomberg show in order to verify a quote. I could not find the actual transcript in our usual places. A search on Bloomberg’s site also came up empty. I decided to turn to YouTube, this time my search worked. It may not be the most popular video on YouTube but it met the writer’s needs, and in this instance I think viewing the actual program again was better then reading a transcript.

The photo sharing site, Flickr, is another popular web 2.0 tool. In addition to being a site for users to share personal photographs, the site is widely used as a photo repository for bloggers and news outlets.

Last month Brent Hunsberger was reporting on Nike’s Hyperdunk ads. When Nike decided to withdraw their ads, W+K also removed them from their web site. There were 3 ads in all. Brent had a copy of one but needed to see the other two fast, so he asked for help. I was able to find all the ads on Flickr.

In short, it is time to start thinking of these popular web 2.0 sites as valuable information retrieval tools. You will be amazed at what you can find.

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