We spoke to Peter Rippon, Editor of the BBC Online Archive about making Your Story
So what is ‘Your Story?’
BBC Your Story is a personalised story of your life, generated using your Facebook data in combination with BBC News archived content.
What’s the link between BBC News and Facebook?
There are 24m Facebook users in the UK of which 69% do not consume BBC News content. We want to allow that under-served audience to leverage the data that Facebook holds about them to create a compelling, personal news experience in a way that appeals to them.
What is the outcome? Is it cool?
It’s a new way of telling stories. ‘Your Story’ intertwines personal and news events with your timeline. For example it would tell you what happened the day you were born, or how old you were when significant moments in history occurred.
So it makes world news more relevant to you?
That’s right. It also explores more complex data and can tell you things like how many new countries had been founded by the time you were 21. When it tells you these things it also lets you watch or listen to some of the relevant content from the BBC archive.
It sounds simple. Was it easy to make?
Well it depends on how into tech you are. Your Story is a browser-based, 'parallax'-scrolling style (like old computer games like Sonic or Super Mario) interactive storytelling experience. It has been crafted by a team of User Experience designers and developers in Brighton, Dublin and Belfast. It was also built through remote collaboration with support from the Belfast-based News Archive team to prepare the large body of archive content. It’s then plugged into Facebook in order to generate Your Story.
How did the idea come about?
We were exploring how we could open up the online archive so people could explore it and even perhaps have a serendipitous journey down memory lane.
What happens next if people like it?
If it’s popular we would look to increase the amount of data and the archive within the pilot. This would make the stories richer and also be more relevant to a broader range of people.