Visualizing context is likely one of the new key challenges for journalists, reporters and news curators alike. Showing both the macro and micro level of an information space, making it easy to see both the forest and the trees is not an easy task.
Mattermap is a new tool that allows journalists to tell a story visually without having to be straight-jacketed into a linear, top-down news column as we always see.
To show different viewpoints, references and alternative sources for a news story, a mindmap style approach can provide an excellent communication approach.
"For more than two years, Ter Doest and Van Rijkswijk worked on a visual infographic that would facilitate the gathering of background information and particular viewpoints about chosen topics. The goal was to make information gathering and consumption easier.
The Dutch Stimuleringfonds voor de Pers granted the two a subsidy as they felt Mattermap could help the reader – who often doesn’t follow debates about certain topics from the beginning – be able to grasp topics more easily and more rapidly. Readers would be encouraged to form an own opinion.
The result is a bright, straightforward journalistic mindmap. The Mattermap creator puts the central issue in a big circle surrounded by boxes with different ideas or perspectives about that issue. Big black lines lead to clouds with quotes, videos and research results that support or illustrate the specific viewpoints.
In a glimpse, one can see various perspectives on a topic. In a Mattermap about the new Dutch King Willem-Alexander, for example: who likes him, who does not and why. In another Mattermap, relevant arguments on whether the Arab Spring has been fruitful or a flop, are clustered.
Interestingly, in every cloud, one can add hyperlinks and relevant information about the person referred to, therefore providing context."
Free to use. (available only in Dutch)
Intro video (in Dutch): http://youtu.be/e5wHYH4NNRg
Getting Started in English: https://www.mattermap.nl/meer-weten/2013/03/27/quickstart-in-english/
More info: https://www.mattermap.nl/