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Best Free Content Curation Tools 2012

by DiTesco on December 26, 2011

content curation tools
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Content Curation has been on the upside lately, and while there are some who don’t think that it is an ethical form of “content creation”, there are those that think completely the opposite. Whichever side you choose to be, you should know that if you do decide to “curate content”, to always give credit to its original source and never copy an entire article even if you are linking back to its original author. That does not have anything to do with curation and may even be considered as stealing content. While I am at it, creating a list of useless links is also not regarded as curating content.

Which side are you on? Do you favor “content curation” as an interesting approach of content creation/marketing, or are you totally against it?

Curating content done properly, IMO has its positives. I do it here on iblogzone, via my weekly speedlinks (weekly roundups). With so much information out there, this is one method where users are starting to see its advantages, due to its objective of “finding the best content about a certain topic”, combining them together, and letting like minded people to know about them. Really great to filter out the noise, and useless content. Actually, some A-listers, such as Darren Rowse of ProBlogger, even includes it on the list of Charles Darwin’s 12 Rules of Blogging Survival, published not long ago. Number 10 on this list reads:

Be the best curator of meaningful content

Find the best information that others have written and posted online—the best articles, charts, tables, infographics, videos, or pictures. Collect it in a logical, easy-to-use navigational structure on your blog.

Make sure you link to and give credit to your sources and only summarize (or take small portions of) the articles you link to. Content curation is a way to share great information that is already available and to become seen as a key source of great information.

Did you notice the words, meaningful, great information and credit your sources? That’s the essence of being a great content curator and nothing else.

UPDATE: April 2012 – Another article that I highly recommend you reading is Content Curation Guide for SEO – What, How, Why from SEOMoz. This gives you a clear picture of how content curation can be used and more.

Considering that one of the most recent trends has been the increase in content marketing,  2012 appears to be year where curating content may see a big surge of  users and may be yet another content marketing technique that you may want to try out. For that purpose, here are some content curation tools that you can use to help you be the best content curator in any topic of your choice, provided you do it, once again, properly.

Free Online Content Curation Tools

scoop.it curation toolScoop.it Is my favorite online content curation tool so far. Can’t thank Ileane of BasicBlogTips enough for introducing me to this awesome tool. Please follow the link to find out more info.

curationsoft curation toolCurationSoft (aff link) is the only desktop software that I am currently aware of and I love using it. The free version is fully functional and is only limited to “Google’s Blog Search” to source for content. More info in this post – Content Curation, The Next Big Thing?.

Update Jan 2013: Just found out recently that CurationSoft version 2.0 has been rolled out. This is a huge update and one of the good things that I really like about this new version is the ability to post directly from within the software, something that was missing before. Makes it a whole lot easier this way. Here’s Jack’s video presentation.

Google+ is probably one of those tools that you are using and may not be aware that it is actually a great content curation tool, among other things. Yet another reason to be part of the network.

Bundlr.com is a simple way to “bundle” and share web content easily. You can sign in with your Twitter account.

storify curation toolStorify.com is a popular curation service. Content can be added either using the bookmarklet to curate content from any public webpage, or you can use the integrated search to add content by simply drag and dropping.

PearlTrees Content AggregatorPearlTrees.com is rising very fast in the daily content aggregation tool arena. Discover, organize, and share everything you like on the web. Has the ability to share across a number of platforms.

MySyndicaat News AggregatorMySyndicaat.com is a personalized news aggregator to collect, filter and share web content that is important to you and others. You can aggregate content from a variety of sources on the web – automate keyword searches (Google, Yahoo, …), pull in RSS feeds from news organizations, monitor discussions on blogs, etc.. Content can be automatically updated to ensure information is current.

That’s it! For now, these are the content curation tools that I recommend you using for 2012. These are the ones that have called my attention and if I find more, I will certainly include them in this list.

PageOne CuratorJune 2012: So you like curating content? This curating tool is not your ordinary software. It is simply mind blowing and if you are serious about content curation, this is definitely one tool that I highly recommend, no kidding. PageOne Curator is one of the best curating tool that I have just added to my arsenal.

Now, and understandably, you may want to know more about Content Curation and why it could benefit you, when done properly. Download this free eBook to find out more about curation and what PageOne can do for you. The eBook is free and no optins. Just hit this button to download the PDF file (opens new window).

If you know of any other online content curation tool that should have been included here, please let me know.

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+DiTesco is a Business and Inbound Marketing Consultant, and founder of iBlogzone.com. iBlogzone's main objective is to help startups and small business owners achieve success in their online ventures. | More About Me and my Consulting Services.

Francisco has written 693 articles at iBlogzone.com

1 Ileane December 26, 2011 at 5:10 pm

Hi DiTesco. I just can’t get enough of this content curation trend we seem to be experiencing right now. I’m using many of the tools you mention and so far my favorite is Scoop.it. The only problem is that you are limited to 5 topics (with the free version) and with only 5 topics I feel like I’m just getting warmed up :)
So I started exploring another tool called Themeefy which presents the content in a layout that is more like a booklet or magazine style. I also continue to use Paper.li and I plan to use it even more in the coming months.
Many people view Tumblr as a blogging platform but I’m using it for content curation as well. The other tool I tried is called Curated.by – but it’s not as eye appealing as Scoop.it.

Thanks for sharing your list and your views on the subject. Have a wonderful week my friend.

2 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:15 pm

Hi Ileane. Sorry for the late response. Yeah, like you, I am really getting the hang of this curation thing and also chose Scoop.it as ne of my favorites. Never heard of Themmefy before, but since hot me started on scoop.it, I am going to take a look at that one too :)

Hope you had a great new year, my friend.

3

Ryan Biddulph

December 26, 2011 at 5:34 pm

Hi DiTesco,

I am new to the term, actually. Although I knew of the concept…not sure how it got past me ;)

If the content is top shelf and the sources are properly referenced I see no issues with content curation. Self-created content seems to work well for most but developing a knack for acquiring and packaging valuable tidbits can be just as helpful. Good content is good content, helpful info is helpful info.

Not sure if I’ll venture into this area as I enjoy creating so darn much but I can certainly see the benefits of content curation.

Thanks for sharing your insight DiTesco.

RB

4 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:28 pm

Hi Ryan. Sorry for the late response. Happy New Year!

lol, I was actually new to the term too up until about a month ago. And if it wasn’t for Ileane, it would probably have passed by me too :) I agree that self-created content works better, but I think that this concept can help a bit in a variety of ways. I think that if you balance self-created with curated content, it would be a good option ;-)

5 sam @ goa carnival December 27, 2011 at 7:31 am

Yes no doubt in that these are the great tips for how we can make our content solid with the help of these tips which is amazing to use because there each and every info is looking like very useful for our blog/site.

6 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:29 pm

Thanks Sam. Happy New Year!

7 Christopher December 27, 2011 at 12:37 pm

Thanks. Those are great content resources. Looking forward to get more tips from you :).

8 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:30 pm

You are welcome Christopher and welcome to my blog. Looking for ward to seeing more from you over here :)

9 Toni December 27, 2011 at 2:05 pm

Hi Francisco,

Thanks for the great review on online curation tools!

I’d like to welcome you to test Flockler http://www.flockler.com/ . We’re still in super early beta, but building a tool to create your own Flipboard-like curated magazine for smartphones, tablets and web.

10 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:32 pm

Hi Toni. You are welcome and thanks for the link too. Have to admit that I have not stumbled upon Flocker yet. Will definitely look at it..

Thanks for stopping by.

11 Matt December 27, 2011 at 3:47 pm

I agree with Google+. I have been using Twitter for quite some time for the same purpose. With Google+ being one of the newest major players to the social media arean, I am curiosu to see how well they do in the next few months.

12 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:33 pm

Hi Matt. Yeah, Google+ is very promising indeed and it does belong to “Google” so it is hard to overlook its potential. There are actually many people that even predicted that “some” blogs would be replaced by Google+ and that it would be a great platform for curating content. We’ll see :) Thanks for stopping by

13 Dan Keller December 27, 2011 at 8:05 pm

Hi Ditesco. I took a little time away from blogging (6 months or so) and I am amazed at all the new tools out there. I am far behind on this whole content curation movement. I will have to check some of these out. I have been using G+ a bit more recently. The more I use it the more I like it.

14 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:36 pm

Hi Dan. Sorry for the late response…. It is so good to see you here and most importantly that you are back in action. That’s great!

Anyway, knowing you, you will quickly get “updated” with all these new tools.. Thanks for stopping by and happy new year

15 Robert December 27, 2011 at 11:18 pm

I might quote some other content, or link to it, but I’ll never go and use the whole thing in any of my posts. I’d rather send my visitors to the site and let them know that I’m genuine rather than stealing someone elses content and passing myself off as a fraud

16 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:37 pm

My thoughts exactly Robert. using “someone” else content is outright wrong and only hurts the credibility and reputation of the site owner. Your attitude towards “content creation” is definitely the right one.. Thanks for stopping by and all the best

17

Mark

December 28, 2011 at 3:02 am

Hi Ditesco,

While TrendSpottr (http://trendspottr.com) is not technically a curation tool — it’s a real-time search and content discovery service — it is often used to curate the most trending content for any topic, keyword or phrase. It’s free to use though we are introducing a premium paid version early in 2012.

18 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:39 pm

Hi Mark. Just saw your site and it does look very promising. Got it bookmarked as I intend to explore a bit more soon. Thanks for stopping by and sorry for the late response… Happy new year

19 Coleman Foley February 22, 2012 at 11:24 pm

Another good content discovery service is Trapit (http://trap.it). It is less focused on real-time content than TrendSpottr. Instead it searches content created in the last 30 days. It can also give you a different view than TrendSpottr because it ignores social signals like Twitter activity and focuses solely on the relevance of the content itself.

20 DiTesco February 23, 2012 at 11:07 am

Might give this a try Coleman. Sounds interesting.. Thanks for the heads up

21 neo December 28, 2011 at 10:05 am

“Content Curation” could be a big hot topic of 2011-12. Sometimes I ask myself if some of this tools are not going to generate more pinknoise, trash and confusion in the web than ever. Who are the content producer and where is the reader ? But who care right and to avoid this I only curate only good stuff.

I’m using scoop.it and enjoy it so far, and I think scoop.it is the best curation tool out there. Because I try many of the tools you mention in this post but I prefer scoop.it more.

22 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:42 pm

Hi Neo. I can totally relate on what you just said. In a way, I think that content curation will also end up generating more noise eventually. This is where I think that good tools, such as scoop.it and the curator itself will stand out. Just like anything else, quality is foremost and curating content is not an exception.

Thanks for stopping by and happy new year

23 Ray Tolley December 28, 2011 at 11:20 am

I have found that ScoopIt! meets my needs. As many of us are experienced, if not experts, in our own fields we can identify posts that may or may not be of benefit to our readers. They are also placed on lists as convenient ‘to do later’ items. I also invariably add my own comments rather than just re-scooping.

As long as one is not pretending that these are the intermediaries’ own works I see nothing immoral – I am only doing what good librarians have previously done for centuries.

24 DiTesco January 2, 2012 at 12:45 pm

Hi Ray. Good librarians it is… in essence that is really what it is all about. Over time we just like to “give” it a new name or term to make it look “advanced” or updated. Curation has been for a long while now and perhaps people did just not pay too much attention about it :)

25 Charlie Screendrip December 28, 2011 at 12:44 pm

Hi DiTesco,

I think there are a whole bunch of positives from content curation and not least that services such as Storify actually can add much longer life to your social media content.

I think it has to be used carefully though, with intelligence and real editing to make it worth anything. Otherwise you risk just sending people to a third party site to link to loads of other sites other than your own. A risky business if you haven’t got a real good eye and a mind of a thought leader.

26

Diana Grant

December 28, 2011 at 8:07 pm

Hello Ditesco, I enjoy doing the content curation and using Scoop.it as my partner. I have not tried the any other tool except scoop.it. This was the first and I think the best since most of the commentators love this tool too! Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

27 Umair December 29, 2011 at 10:34 am

I have some doubts about Google+. I have perception that the popularity of the social network depends upon one important factor among other. The factor is the amount of celebrities using that social network which are hard to find on Google+

28

Mark Nett

December 29, 2011 at 11:58 am

DiTesco, COntent curation is word which I came across for the first time, through your post I went to your review on sccop.it.Now I got full understanding of what it is thanks for that.

Can we think content curation as content aggregator?

29

Todd Lohenry

December 29, 2011 at 1:48 pm

Nice post. There are a few here that I haven’t tried but of all the ones listed, I’m digging Storify the most. In my curation workflow, I tweet everything that looks mildly interesting and the next morning I go back and review my tweets in Storify and add the most interesting one to a ‘trends’ post that I can send directly to WordPress. I’ve also found it’s great for doing a ‘let me tell you a story’ kind of post. Storify is a starter in my blogging lineup…

30 Jane @ aweber form conversion December 30, 2011 at 3:32 am

Thanks for presenting interesting topic. As more and more content is being presented through web, content curation tools are useful. One should know how to use, where to use and what to use to get maximum benefit from them.

31 Armando Duran January 3, 2012 at 11:12 am

Hi DiTesco,

As I read the quote: “Make sure you link to and give credit to your sources and only summarize (or take small portions of) the articles you link to. Content curation is a way to share great information that is already available and to become seen as a key source of great information.”

It reminded me of a curation tool that I’ve used before ScoopIt and for me is perhaps one of the best uses of WordPress Multi User (now multi site) that I’ve seen: http://amplify.com/

Thanks for the post!

32 Nitin Soni@Block Websites January 4, 2012 at 1:39 pm

Nice and very useful and helpful tools for content sharing, really all these sites are provides grate facilities of content sharing. Good work…unique site and interesting too… keep it up…looking forward for more updates.

33 RonLeyba January 4, 2012 at 3:15 pm

Great to see scoop.it at the top of your list. And about google+ as a content curation tool, hmmm, let me check that out. Thanks DiTesco!

34

Ellie

January 12, 2012 at 5:58 am

Hi DiTesco. Good stuff per usual! Especially interested in the Content Curation concept. I intend to follow up on this one. Cheers :)

Ellie

35 Carol Clifford February 18, 2012 at 2:52 am

Hi – just stumbled into your blog and really enjoyed this post. I used to be one of those good librarians who happily linked people to the information they were seeking and while I no longer work as a librarian, feel obliged to say that expert evaluation of the quality of information is the key to benefiting grom good content. I’ve noticed that IMers tend to have their own definitions of what constitutes good content and this has contributed to so much ‘crap’ being peddled as good content on the Internet. Anyone can position themselves as an expert without knowing very much at all. There is a huge difference between ‘information’ and good quality, reputable information – so I hope that the trend towards content curation leads to a trend towards better overall content on the Internet.

Best wishes,
Carol

36

Carolyne Darimont

February 22, 2012 at 4:37 pm

The best content curation tool is not an app or a site, it is a professional librarian. Librarians have been curating content for centuries and know how to do it.

37 DiTesco February 22, 2012 at 6:41 pm

I agree. Good librarians are indeed awesome curators, just like those that curate “items” on museums. Online Content Curation, I guess is the digital age of “filtering” noise from all the information out there on a selected topic.

38

Archana

March 20, 2012 at 3:22 am

Hi DiTesco,
I have been seeing lot of articles explaining how important good content is for digital b2b marketing. Meanwhile I came across this content curation topic. Although I understand it on a overview level, just wanted to know more details on that. I will definitely try the tools you have mentioned here, but it will be very good if you can point me to some good legitimate articles on this topic to know more details. Thanks.

39 BeaconLive (@BeaconLive) March 23, 2012 at 6:35 pm

Best Content Curation Tools of 2012 http://t.co/vVqhkGSM #BeaconCuration

40 Caleb April 1, 2012 at 11:20 pm

One thing I’m wondering about Scoop It is does it enable you push certain curated posts straight to your WP blog and it then shows up as a post?

Other than that, the Page One option seems the best on your list. Actually I got an email earlier today about for a wso called the G Alert Panda Proof plugin which does easy curation and I ended up searching for comparisons and came back upon this post with your updated info about the Page One ;)

Also, I’m interested to know which one you use for your speedlink posts?

41

Jim

April 28, 2012 at 5:05 am

Has anyone here actually read the terms of service at Scoopit?

To use it you have to agree to open up your whole computer to them!!!
Hard drives, Video card, CPU the whole works. To me that is invasion of my privacy and there is not a chance I would ever allow it for any reason.

I’m an honest person and I understand the need to protect themselves but delving into my whole system is OVERKILL!
Sounds like a security problem to me. They offer no assurances on your security except a disclaimer that they are not responsible for it. As far as I’m concerned it is not worth the risk to use it.

42

Andrea Smith

May 13, 2012 at 5:25 am

Content curation is a good way to give information for your readers in one go. By collecting and presenting information in a compact way, your readers will have an easier time finding what they are looking for. Just be sure to give the proper credits to the original creators

43 Alan Young June 14, 2012 at 5:23 pm

Hi there DiTesco,
I just found your site here within the past week-love it, book marked it!
Would you recommend page one curator over the paid version of curationsoft?
Thanks!

44 DiTesco June 14, 2012 at 7:08 pm

Hi. They are different in approach and PageOne is a much wider suite for curation. Curation soft is very good to curate snippets but is not as good as PageOne for writing posts. I have both, so that’s that, LOL

45

Sebastian

July 3, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Hi DiTesco,

this is a great list of curation tools. Thank you very much! I didn’t know some of them so I’ll definitely have a look.

Have you heard of keeeb.com? It’s a great tool to save any text passage, picture or video you like and you can decide whether or not to share it with others. I love to use it while I research for things.

Being an employee of keeeb I would love you to have a look and would love to know what you think!

Thanks!

46 Matt Clarke July 16, 2012 at 10:22 am

I think that curation as described above is a viable and credible form of content syndication. The problem is that not everyone has the same standards and ethical code. As long as credit is being given to the author then I personally have no major issues. The tools above will certainly help and this is an area that I am going to look into now….many thanks.

47 Web Design Dubai July 21, 2012 at 10:35 am

Scoop it for me is by far the best one available in the market (at-least for me). I have been using it for few months now and really liked how efficient and slick it is.

48 Josh August 4, 2012 at 8:05 am

I’ve tried some of the tools in the post and they seem to just be a way to provide user generated content for other sites. The CurationSoft and PageOne Curator software seems to be more appropriate for website publishers.

Would like to ask your updated opinion on both software since you have been using them for a while. Which one do you prefer and which one would you recommend to buy?

They both seem rather similar to me. Cheers.

49 DiTesco August 4, 2012 at 11:13 am

HI. You are right. Only CurationSoft and PageOne are the curation tools that you can use for your own websites. Both are great and highly recommended. However, if you are looking for a more “complete” software to do the job of curation, I have to admit that PageOne is way better. However, and since CurationSoft has a free version, maybe you can give it a test drive and see if that would be enough for your needs. Sadly, PageOne does not have a trial version but it is really good.

50 Andrew October 25, 2012 at 12:58 pm

I would like to recommend one more content curation tool to personal usage.
Likehack.com. It collect yours “likes&tweets with links” in one place and make it searchable by categories, time and keywords.
In addition it analyze your interests and recommend to you new content from our other users with relevant interests.
Currently we launched a alpha-version, with Facebook and Twitter only. We glad invite you to a test.

51 DiTesco October 25, 2012 at 9:14 pm

Thanks for the heads up Andrew. Might give it a whirl and depending on the case, feature it on my weekly roundup :)

52 DiTesco October 25, 2012 at 9:17 pm

Hi Andrew. Went over there but it seems I have to wait for a while.. is that how it works?

53 Andrew October 26, 2012 at 11:53 am

Thank you for interest! =)

After registration we need some time to grab your Likes from Facebook. Time depends on the number of Likes. Usually it’s 10-20 minutes, but if you have much content may be more.
Besides now we move to the new servers and optimize load. It’s very hard, because we have huge database. Most likely why there are any mistakes and everything is slower than we would like.

54

michael

November 5, 2012 at 9:14 am

Hi,

Great info,thanks for share!

But content curation is either similiar to autoblogging, the only difference is, that you link back to the original author or write little bit of own content-a description of
the original author post in your own words.

I wonder that you can make good money with this (clickbank or adsense) then every marketer says to you; “this not works”, “such sites makes no money”.

Is this so? Does anyone here make good money with an content curation site?
And where is the best placement in such sites to promote adsense or cb products?

best wishes
michael

55 pronostic pmu December 10, 2012 at 7:06 am

Thank you for your article (and please excuse me, English is not my mother tongue), do you write a second part to cover the subject entirety? In all cases, it’s a topical issue that will have to be treated in this way more often. Regards, Roger .

56 DiTesco December 10, 2012 at 9:57 am

I am thinking to write a “sequel” about content curation soon, although the best practices are still the same, there are some new tools that are now available.. stay tuned

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