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Moreover Introduces New Blog Monitoring Tool
Posted On September 29, 2003
Moreover Technologies (, based in the U.K., has announced a new business information service called Weblog Content Pack. The database service scans some 25,000 Web logs (aka blogs) for enterprises eager to expand their competitive intelligence and market research to encompass this new form of information. The new package adds to Moreover's Connected Intelligence (ci) product suite. For an additional fee, users will be able to receive near real-time (15-minute delay) updates on blog content filtered for profiled interests through standard delivery options offered in Moreover's ci services.

Moreover already provides ongoing alerts covering close to 6,000 news, corporate, and government Web sites, as well as discussion boards. Using a combination of computerized analysis and human reviewers, content is categorized and released to users. Jim Pitkow, CEO of Moreover Technologies, explains that the company's business model has proven so successful in competing with traditional business information services because they do not have to pay "syndication" or royalty fees to publishers. Instead they supply headlines with links that connect users to the full stories on Web sites. Although he admitted that some premier sites charge fees for archived stories, he pointed out that such sites are relatively rare. In most cases, users can scan headlines and probably locate a free site that has a basic story, only paying for archived coverage from a more famous "brand-name" source when necessary.

Web logs or blogs provide access to private commentaries by consumers and influential gatekeepers in specific fields. Though highly individual, the content can represent a valuable access for breaking news, particularly in technical arenas, and to the reputation or image of businesses. According to the Pew Internet Report, there are over 3 million Web log users in the U.S.

Saluting Web logs as an emerging news media, Pitkow commented: "Web logs are increasingly being recognized as an important source of business critical information. Web logs highlight the news that matters as well as providing instantaneous commentary and opinions on a wide variety of topics and events. Moreover's blog search ensures that they are staying on top of what is being written about them, their competitors, and their customers, wherever it appears on the Web. By looking for information outside of basic news Web sites, we can offer businesses a truly comprehensive service--ensuring that they receive the information that is important to them wherever it appears."

Moreover assigns rankings to all its sources. Blogs carry a rather low ranking for reliability and authority within the family of Moreover sources, according to Pitkow. In order to deal with the problem of variable quality within blog content, the company has developed a separate set of rankings. The company has also tagged each blog with metadata, including the number of incoming and outgoing links as well as the blog's status in the blogging community.

Subscribing institutions can use the icon rankings and the metadata to customize news feeds for their users. The data arrive in XML format. However the rankings only apply to the overall blogs, not to individual stories or threads, nor can users see the icons on the material sent, according to Pitkow.

To obtain Weblog Content Pack, customers will need to subscribe to an existing ci service: ci-watch for a customized, constantly updated news feed, ci-search to search the existing database, or ci-builder to revise and manage feeds. According to Pitkow, the charges for basic Moreover services can range from as low as $6,000 to over $250,000. The high end represents companies that license the entire database (ci-metabase) to run on in-house computers. Adding the Weblog Content Pack will involve adding 10 percent to 20 percent above basic Moreover subscription charges.

This new service expands the reach of business information services one might categorize as "reputation monitors."

Barbara Quint was senior editor of Online Searcher, co-editor of The Information Advisor’s Guide to Internet Research, and a columnist for Information Today.

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