News Corp Buys Social News Agency Storyful For $25 Million

Image via Storyful

News Corp announced today that it is acquiring Storyful, a Dublin-based startup that describes itself as “the world’s first social news agency.”

The press release states that News Corp will use its own digital presence to enhance and expand Storyful’s. Additionally, the $25 million acquisition will bolster News Corp’s worldwide video capabilities. Still, Storyful will remain a standalone business unit.

Storyful’s purpose is to help news organizations thrive online as readers move away from print. It “discovers, verifies, acquires and distributes timely and relevant video and user-generated content to its partners,” according to the press release.

The key word in there is “verifies.” It finds newsworthy events from anywhere on the web, including the likes of Instagram and other similar social media sites. Then it does the grunt work to make sure posters are who they claim to be and videos and other pieces of information are correct. That way, news organizations know that they’re reporting factual and accurate information.

This is a useful tool for news organizations, some of which are still transitioning to the online world. In 2013 so far, Storyful’s verified content has generated 750 million views for partnered news organizations.

News Corp’s Chief Executive Robert Thomson said in the press release, “Storyful has become the village square for valuable video, using journalistic sensibility, integrity and creativity to find, authenticate and commercialize user-generated content. Through this acquisition, we can extend the village square across borders, languages and platforms.”

By joining forces with News Corp, Storyful can quickly transform its vision into a global reality,” said Storyful CEO Mark Little. “We believe that journalism in the age of social media needs to be open, innovative and collaborative, and so does the business model that will sustain it. News Corp is a natural fit for a company which wants to help reinvent the news industry.”