Futures Lab Update #162: Making Audio Interactive with Anchor App

    by Rachel Wise
    August 18, 2016
    A screenshot from this week's Futures Lab Update video.

    This story first appeared on RJI’s Futures Lab. Reporting by Sarah Sabatke.

    Anchor is an iOS app that allows users to interact and engage through audio recordings. These audio conversations can viewed in the app itself, or they can be shared on social media or exported to include in other broadcasts.


    For more information:

    • Anchor is a free app available for iOS devices in the App Store.
    • Nir Zicherman, one of Anchor’s co-foudners, told TechCrunch the app was born from the desire to make radio more accessible and interactive. “As popular as this medium is we feel it’s really hard for regular people to contribute to it,” Zicherman said. “Unlike photos and videos and writing, recording and publishing your voice has not been democratized. You can listen … but you can’t talk back to NPR.”
    • The playlist of black protest music, which WNYC reporter Arun Venugopal compiled with the help of feedback from Anchor, is on Spotify. The playlist was created as part of a story for WNYC series Micropolis.
    • Another WNYC show, The Takeaway, uses Anchor almost daily to collect listener feedback. “People will respond with their voices, about the RNC or the DNC or a piece of breaking news like around any of the numerous terrorist attacks we’ve had to deal with in the last year,” said Delaney Simmons, WNYC director of social  media. “And getting immediate feedback and immediate reactions from listeners around the globe is really adding a nice balance, well-roundedness, to a national program.”

    Rachel Wise is an editor at the Futures Lab at the Reynolds Journalism Institute and co-producer of the weekly Futures Lab video update.

     FuturesLabWebBanner-mediashiftThe Reynolds Journalism Institute’s Futures Lab video update features a roundup of fresh ideas, techniques and developments to help spark innovation and change in newsrooms across all media platforms. Visit the RJI website for the full archive of Futures Lab videos, or download the receive email notification of each new episode.
    Tagged: anchor audience engagement audio futures lab nir zicherman sarah sabatke

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