Curators – seeing the big picture

Photo by Linda Xu on Unsplash

The amount of raw data available to us is increasing at an amazing rate from digital information production and social media sharing (Dale, 2014). Interestingly, video is the fastest increasing category with footage from phones and Go Pros, and YouTube is the second biggest search engine (Rosenbaun, 2013).

With this increase in raw data digital curators are emerging as a profession who are able to provide user specific information (Dale, 2014). Bhargava (2011) list five types of curation, which may be read about here. Curators see the big picture and what they present helps us to find and use relevant information. But what makes a great curator?

Weisgerber (2011) provides eight steps on how to bundle the best information and build followers. Steigman (2013) also provides processes on how to content curate under four sections of audience, content, community and measurement. Common elements to digital content curation from both slide shows are:

  • Identify and know your audience – know which formats they like, what they will click on, appreciate and which media is best to communicate with them.
  • Select relevant information for your audience – for their interests/industry, help them do their job better.
  • Add value to the information you are presenting – either in the form of comments or putting the information in context.
  • Engage with your audience – provide a space for interaction and interact with them, don’t be a sharebot.
  • Credit your sources

Curators are able to use their knowledge, skills and tools to bring the information together. Dale (2014) has created a list of content creation tools that may be used for specific purposes. These include:

  • Find, aggregate and organise – Feedly, Tweetdeck, Hootsuite, Diigo, Evernote
  • News discovery – Newsle (now integrated into LinkedIn), Flipboard, Prismatic*
  • News creation/newsletter tools –,, Storify*
  • Visual curation boards – Pinterest, Pearltrees
  • Social publishing hubs – Rebelmouse*
  • Networks – Google +, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn

Note: *Rebelmouse now appears to be a business for clients, try TINT ( for a social publishing hub *Prismatic and Storify are no longer in operation.

Previous to learning about content curation I hadn’t thought about the process of curation. Most of my practise of curating focused on finding and organising information, however, now I can see there are several other elements of curation I need to include. I also definitely need to incorporate more tools to aggregate and bring information to me.

What do you think is the most important element of curation? Are there any tools not on the list that you like to use for curation?


Bhargava, R. (2011, March 31). The five models of content curation [blog post]. Retrieved from

Dale, S. (2014). Content curation: The future of relevance. Business Information Review, 31(4), 199–205. doi: 10.1177/0266382114564267

Rosenbaum, S. (2013, October 7). The Coming Age of the Curation Economy: Building Context Around Content [online article]. Retrieved from

Steigman, D. (2013, December 11). How to be a great content curator (21 tips) [slideshow]. Retrieved from

Weisgerber, C. (2011, November 16). Building thought leadership through content curation [slideshow]. Retrieved from


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