ICYMI: CNN Tells the Future; AOL Patch Says ‘Goodbye’

Image via Shutterstock.In case you missed it…

A way cool futuristic new program, Dataminr for News,  unveiled by CNN yesterday uses Twitter to get tipped off about breaking stories hours before anyone else knows about them. Our friends at TVNewser covered the event:

Dataminr uses an advanced algorithm to home in on similar sets of tweets around the world, thus alerting its clients to trends—or breaking news— potentially from the moment it’s first tweeted about…

“…We think it is revolutionary for newsgathering,” SVP of CNN.com K.C. Estenson said, jokingly calling it to “bionic vision for our reporters.”

The network has already been testing the program for six months, using it on-air for about two stories a day, including this past weekend’s Maryland mall shooting, and during the Nelson Mandela memorial service, when Dataminr alerted CNN to the most shared Mandela photos online. CNN then used those photos on-air.

And the employees of AOL Patch are being unceremoniously fired. Jim Romenesko has emails sent in from former Patchers.

“Technically, we were laid off by AOL. I presume that was a condition set by Hale. Second, I have it on good authority the layoffs were 80 to 90 percent of Patchers.”

“The patch years were years of being aol’s tool and plaything. Killed myself, almost literally. Left with literally nothing. Better off dead.”

“I was a local editor for Patch for 3.5 years, up until about an hour ago. ..We knew it was coming. but the silence from New York over the few months was deafening. They left us in a state of suspended animation. For those of us who killed ourselves working for this company, it was a real slap in the face.”

The culling doesn’t stop at writers and editors though. Even a VP was taken down in the bloodbath:

Patch senior vice president/revenue Jim Lipuma has also left the company. He writes on his blog: “I am unemployed. Long and short of it, I chose ‘Happiness.’ Now, I won’t go into details, as I have nothing but love for my organization and the people in it. It was an amazing journey, but today it ends.”