31 essential online tools for journalists

Image representing Zoho as depicted in CrunchBaseImage via CrunchBase, source unknown

As part of the iJournalism class I teach at the UBC j-school, I hold a session on online tools for journalists.

What is striking is how much these tools have developed in the past year.

Some fall by the wayside and new ones spring up, such as sites that mine social network sites for personal information.

After the jump is the list I have prepared for this year:

RSS software
•    NetNewsWire (Mac)
•    NewsFire (Mac)
•    FeedDemon (Windows)
•    FeedReader (Windows)

Online RSS feed readers
•    Google Reader
•    Bloglines

Personalized news pages
•    MyYahoo
•    iGoogle
•    Netvibes
•    PageFlakes

Blog aggregators:
•    Technorati
•    Icerocket
•    BlogPulse

Micro-blogging:
•    Twitter
•    Twitter Search
•    Tweet Scan

News alerts:
•    Google Alerts
•    Yahoo Alerts

Web 2.0 tools

•    Documents:
Google Docs
Zoho

•    Photos:
Flickr

•    Social bookmarking:
Delicious

•    Organization
Backpack

•    Bypass registration:
Bugmenot

•    Free online storage:
Windows Live SkyDrive
Box
Wuala

•    People search:
Pipl
Wink
ZoomInfo
YoName

This list is far from exhaustive as it is aimed as an introduction to web tools for journalists. If you have more to add, please leave a comment.

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  • “If you have more to add, please leave a comment.”

    Yes, I have more; http://www.injournalist.com 🙂

  • Tom Dupon says:

    Too bad NomaDesk is not on this list: NomaDesk allows you to share, synchronize and backup files – a bit like box.net, but the big advantage for journalists is that you can also access and edit your documents when there is no internet connection available.

    You can download it at http://www.nomadesk.com

    Feel free to send me your remarks / comments

    Tom Dupon
    Online marketing manager NomaDesk

  • Alicia says:

    Another one, recommended by journalism.co.uk, is Skimbit (skimbit.com) – like Delicious but more visual, and allows you to categorise and compare your findings in a number of ways.

  • Thanks for the suggestion Tom. Unfortunately I am on a Mac so can’t try it out. Are you working on a Mac version of NomaDesk?

  • moritz_ says:

    You are a journalist? No matter if you write on economic issues at home or politics abroad, you want to keep your sources secret and safe. We believe that Wuala is especially suitable for journalist as online storage solution, because journalists, more than most other people, need to know that their private documents stay private. The affair around German Telecom (http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5jwWwnSpVkRThVzCLhKvMW1seyC2g) has shown that companies can be a little too interested in these information and might even cross the boundaries of what is legal. Wuala on the other hand protects your files, as every file is encrypted before being uploaded and even we can not look into your files, as long as you do not publish them for everyone to see.

    If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.
    Yours sincerely,
    moritz_ from wuala

    PS Thanks for being mentioned 🙂

  • Tom Dupon says:

    @ Alfred Hermida

    NomaDesk will be releasing a Mac version. In the meanwhile, you can try to run NomaDesk under Parallels.

    Thanks for your reply.

  • paulbradshaw says:

    There are a few mobile tools I’d add – Shozu is essential. Then there are the Google Maps and Gmail apps, and Opera Mini for browsing. ZoneTag allows you to geotag images you take. Twibble allows you to send GPS tagged tweets – useful if you’re being mapped as you cover something. Posterous.com is a good flexible blogging service for email blogging, podcasting, etc.
    I could go on…

  • Thanks Paul. I’ve found the list just keep growing and growing.

  • Annie says:

    Are there any new tools for journalists/writers to manage workflow? For editors, writers, photographers to manage workflow from scratch to the end? thanks.

  • viswaminfotech says:

    wonderful collection

  • Calendar says:

    This Tool helps you to manage your Time 😉

  • Corrinna Pole says:

    As a reporter for a community newspaper I think these links are extremely useful! What I would really like to find is a really good template for my contacts. I have yet to develop a good way to keep my contacts sorted and stored and have been trying to build a good list with excel but so far nothing is really decent. If anyone has any suggestions there please pass it along!!

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