Everyone has predictions for what 2015 will bring the media industry, but only one has made me cross my fingers and hope it’s true. It’s that 2015 will be the year the push notification grows up. As part of Nieman Lab’s Journalism Predictions for 2015, Philip Bump of the Washington Post shares his thoughts about how news organizations (and brands, too, really) need to get smart about how, where and why they share breaking updates.
Touché. Too often, those push notifications end up in a sea of other notifications. A new Twitter follower, three emails and six updates from the New York Times are forever taking up space on my notification screen. Bump predicts that news orgs will start to fix this:
News outlets often haven’t figured out Circa, allowing users more detailed control over the notifications that they receive on their phone lock screens, the new front page. Or outlets will figure out how to get smarter about how they target users with notifications for things that aren’t breaking, above-the-fold stories. Or they’ll cede that real estate to apps that can deliver specific, detailed information that we might once have called news.
Bump cites DarkSky and Waze as apps that do notifications right. They’re also a separate beast: traffic and weather updates are local, immediate and therefore, useful. When a newspaper notifies me of a feature they’re running on a Sunday, I understand they want my eyeballs over the weekend, but it also reminds me that I want to disable notifications. Rethinking the notification process and user experience is a welcome resolution for 2015.