ALTHOUGH THE CLIPPING SERVICES HAVE UNDOUBTEDLY MADE A GREAT PROGRESS SINCE THE TIME WHEN ARTICLES WERE CUT OUT FROM THE PAPERS WITH SCISSORS, CLIPPING IS STILL JUST PARTLY DONE BY SOFTWARE AND TECHNOLOGY. GOOD SOFTWARE AND STATE-OF-ART EQUIPMENT ARE A VITAL PART OF CLIPPING SERVICES TODAY, BUT IN THE SELECTION OF RELEVANT CLIPPINGS, PEOPLE STILL HAVE THE LAST SAY.
At one of the conferences organized by FIBEP, an international association of media monitoring bureaus, one of the delegates expressed his concern about the increasing number of internet search engines and their complexity, as well as an increasing number of media that, apart from their printed edition, also have an online edition.
However, what seems to be a potentially dangerous area for clipping agencies is, in fact, an advantage. An increasing number of media and their availability
online means that it has become a lot harder to find the right information and that there is an increased need for a professional service in selecting the abundance of information.
Selection of information is the part in which software, no matter how good it is, still can’t entirely replace people. Nobody can deny the important role that technology plays in media monitoring and information processing. That role includes a
whole spectrum of functions: from the selection of clippings to generation of clipping reports, as well as a variety of value-added services such as the generation of different statistical reports, online clipping delivery etc. Clipping process consists of several important stages, and the first one is, of course, to define topics and key words. Key words tracking is usually not a problem, but topic
monitoring is a bigger challenge, especially in the case of general topics such as news from tourism, legislature etc. For example, an article wholly about, let’s say, a visit of a state official to an institution or company can have a sentence or two containing very important information for a client. There are countless examples illustrating how hard it is sometimes to assess if an article is important for a client or not. The next stage in the clipping process is the input of data into the database. In this stage it is necessary to type in basic information about every clipping.