Canadian Startup Helps Newsrooms Gather Details on Breaking News as They Unfold on Social Media

Breaking news stories unfold quickly on social media, and many journalists use networks such as Twitter and Instagram as starting points when they gather information. SAM, an Edmonton-based startup, has built a solution to help journalists source, process, and manage information from social media.

The company has just closed their first round of financing and received investment from the Accelerate Fund, an early-stage Angel co-investment fund managed by AVAC, VA Angels, Bruce Johnson, and other prominent local and international Angel Investors.

SAM is a complete enterprise-ready CMS based in the cloud. Users, in this case editors and journalists, can curate content into a central story on SAM and share it with colleagues in a safe, internal workspace. The information gathered in the story can then be tagged as “verified,” “fake,” “approved,” or “cleared.” Users can also add notes, corroborating facts, or links to user approvals. SAM streamlines these processes in a fully customizable way.

“There is a new human reflex to capture and document absolutely everything that happens around us. This reflex is creating an ocean of content that is fully accessible to journalists and media companies,” says SAM founder James A. Neufeld.

Neufeld says they built SAM to help manage the readily available user-generated content provided by social media, which remains a difficult task. When news breaks on social networks, journalists have to be careful to verify, clear and process the facts for their stories.

“At SAM, we believe this to be one of the most important tasks for the modern journalist – to quickly distill fact from fiction in the fastest news cycles we’ve ever had,” says Neufeld.

The platform has recently been released from beta and is already in use in newsrooms in the U.S. and the U.K. Advertisers and marketers can also use SAM to harness social media for their brand stories.