Website review by
Polly Conway, Common Sense Media
newsmap Website Poster Image
Global news goes visual with nonlinear maps.

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Educational Value

Kids can learn to view information in a nonlinear manner when they explore Newsmap. They'll discover that different countries have different ways of presenting their news, and they can compare countries in terms of news focus and time lines. Kids also can learn how color and text size affect the way each news item is viewed in terms of importance; they'll be processing information in a slightly different way. Newsmap offers a unique way to explore how the world presents its news.

Positive Messages

Some global news headlines are bound to contain violence.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that newsmap is a site that aggregates global news in a unique, visual presentation. If your kids have difficulty absorbing this kind of information in a more linear format, they may appreciate this. Younger kids may be overwhelmed by the number of headlines and have trouble processing them, but kids interested in global issues will find lots to read.

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What's it about?

NEWSMAP is a website that \"visually reflects the constantly changing landscape of the Google News news aggregator.\" The site pulls all its content from Google News, organizing it by color, country, and subject, offering a nonlinear way to observe news trends. Sign up with an email address and a password and then look at the standard Newsmap; it includes many countries and color-coded boxes that contain headlines from categories such as \"world,\" \"national,\" \"business,\" \"technology,\" \"sports,\" \"entertainment,\" and \"health.\" Each color has three tones relating to a story's publication date. A dark shade indicates a news story is from more than an hour ago. A medium shade means it's from more than 10 minutes ago, and a lighter shade means it's from the last 10 minutes. You can check and uncheck boxes to see different configurations of content; for example, you can choose to view only Argentinean entertainment news or sports headlines from the Netherlands.

Is it any good?

The site was created in 2004 and hasn't been updated in a few years. It still runs well and doesn't look dated, but the designer is no longer with the site and probably isn't returning to update or adjust it anytime soon. Still, it's a neat idea that helps users visualize the news in an unusual way. Similar to the many popular mind-mapping sites, Newsmap presents information in a highly visual, nonlinear format. Although it can help users discover patterns and observe what kinds of news each country reports the most, further applications aren't obvious.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how they get their news. Which sources does your family trust? Why?

  • Talk to your kids about censorship. Explain that, in some countries, not all the news is reported fairly or at all. Why would governments want to keep information hidden?

Website details

For kids who love reading the news

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