Word wonks rejoice, Media Cloud is back

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Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society has launched its new-and-improved Media Cloud. According to the site, it’s “an open source, open data platform that allows researchers to answer quantitative questions about the content of online media.” It displays what stories media sources are covering, the language various media use to report the news, and how items spread from one outlet to another. For more than a year, the site has been tracking 50,000 English-language stories daily from 17,000 media sources, including major mainstream media outlets, left- and right-leaning American political blogs and 1,000 popular general-interest blogs. “We’ve used what we’ve discovered from this data to analyze the differences in coverage of international crises in professional and citizen media and to study the rapid shifts in media attention that have accompanied the flood of breaking news that’s characterized early 2011,” the center said today (May 6) in a statement. The site originally launched in 2009.

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