Can you tell us a little bit about Glance and how to access it?
Glance is a news aggregator platform that appears on the lock screen of several Android-based phones. It is a pre-installed app so it cannot be downloaded from Google Play Store. We hope the service can reach anyone who wishes to have easy access to information and popular trends.
There are plenty of news aggregators in Indonesia. What makes Glance stand out?
The biggest perk is the lock screen feature, which means Android users can consume information without having to go through their lock screen. And if the users are bored, we also offer mobile games through the app.
What kind of news are popular on Glance?
It varies! It depends on what’s being talked about. The sunken missing KRI Nanggala-402 submarine and women’s double Greysia Polii / Apriyani Rahayu who won gold in women’s doubles in Tokyo 2020 were some past stories. Interestingly, because our news appears as wallpaper for lock screens, news with strong visuals such as tech, education, travel, and culinary are very popular too.
How does the editorial team work? Specifically, do you cover press events and receive press materials, or is it purely aggregation work?
Mostly news aggregation. Glance currently do not write news based on press materials, but we might need the pictures related to them. Communications professionals can contact us for stories related to entertainment, travel, automotive, and culinary. They can start off by introducing themselves, and if we ever need press materials, photo requests, or interviews one day, we might contact them.
Earlier this year, you joined a fellowship programme at Reuters Institute at University of Oxford. What did you learn while studying there for six months?
Honestly, when I read the announcement, I was quite surprised because my interests and research proposal are not considered popular issues in journalism. My research was about news distribution in Android phones in Asia, especially on lock screens. As it turned out, that was the key to my success because there is not much research about it in Asia. The research were mostly done in Europe and America.
I think the fellowship is super useful for journalists who want to enhance their knowledge about global media development. Sometimes as journalists, we are way too focused on chasing news that we often forget that technology and the media industry have vastly developed.
I learnt so much from other fellows who come from various countries and how journalism works in their country. Fellows are seeking solutions and best studies on how to answer the challenges in journalism. Before joining the fellowship, I was a bit pessimistic with the future of journalism, but after going through it I feel optimistic and more energetic after seeing the community that is supportive.
Can you share any tips for Indonesian journalists who are eyeing the same fellowship?
There are so many problems in the media industry and sometimes they are caused by external factors outside of our control. For example, rapid technology development or government control over information access and press freedom. Generally, Reuters Institute is seeking candidates who have fresh ideas and new perspectives to answer those challenges. So, interested applicants should give a research proposal that is offering a solution or give a new perspective.