Intersect aims to connect people through stories

By Cory Bergman 

A social news site based in Seattle called Intersect just debuted in beta today with an ambitious goal: to encourage people to share stories, mapped by time and place, to see where their paths might cross. The site is the brainchild of Peter Rinearson, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and former Microsoft VP.

Here’s how it works: you share stories, photos and videos along a “personal life storyline,” like the one above from Monica Guzman, the site’s director of editorial outreach. You can tag these stories with time, place and other people, which enables you to identify intersections with stories shared by others.

But in a world of Facebook and Twitter, why should people give Intersect a try? Poynter.org asked Guzman that very question, and she responds in part:

On Intersect, the time that matters isn’t the time something’s posted, but the time it happened. And the chronology that matters isn’t the chronology of a blog or a Twitter feed, but of everybody’s interconnected lives. You don’t have to be friends with someone to discover a connection or find the stories they’ve shared publicly.

Intersect Chief Marketing Officer Monica Harrington, who once worked at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, says the site’s revenue model will emerge following the product launch. “I think we can build a business that does well and that contributes to the larger social good,” she tells Lost Remote. “I’m especially interested in the implications of this in the context of supporting small business.” And she adds, “We’re also optimistic about being able to do things that encourage larger businesses to connect with stakeholders, behave responsibly and engage with the nonprofit sector in ways that work for both.”

You can apply to participate in the beta at Intersect.com.

Advertisement
Advertisement