Profile – CommonTimes

Company: CommonTimes

Launched: July 13, 2005

What is it?

CommonTimes is a social bookmarking site for news. Stories are bookmarked by users from around the web, and tagged. The level of prominence is determined by the number of users who have tagged the news source.

In their own words, “CommonTimes is a social bookmarking site for news readers. Or, in simpler terms, CommonTimes is a news site that publishes stories based on how frequently you choose to bookmark them. The more widely our readers collect certain stories, the more prominently they will appear on our Web site.

If you imagine the mainstream media exists at one extreme of top-down content control where a small group of editors determine what appears in the News, CommonTimes is exactly the opposite – a bottom up news site at which grassroots Web readers determine the top stories by bookmarking them as they browse.

Comparatively, CommonTimes is to news what and Yahoo’s MyWeb are to Internet bookmarks. Contrary to Google News, a closed, automated system limited to mainstream media stories, CommonTimes is an open community system that accepts content from any news site or blog – and is entirely driven by our readers. For example, while Slashdot and Grist Magazine provide a tightly controlled top-down filter of technology and environmental news that only rarely makes the mainstream media, our sections provide a bottom-up view of stories our readers feel are important from any source which may well integrate stories from the latter.

News it what our community decides is news.”

There are web 2.0 elements: social bookmarking, publisher and user tagging, comments to bookmarked stories, and RSS feeds for everything. It’s an interesting experiment and we look forward to participating. There are also easy-to-use tools for bookmarking sites, including tips on how to bookmark directly from bloglines.

For an in depth overview, see Brian Del Vecchio, who writes a fantastic blog (and who tipped us off to the service).

Additional Screen Shots:


Jeff Reifman
Garrett Moon
Kristine Washburn
Boe Miller
Brian Del Vecchio


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