After a trial period, the creators realized the Flipside didn’t offer an optimal experience for mobile users and decided to shut it down and rebuild.
Enter The Flipside 2.0, a newly launched version that includes a branding partnership with the Hulu series “The Looming Tower,” a drama based on a nonfiction book on U.S. counterterrorism efforts leading up to 9/11.
The current iteration of The Flipside offers branded content from the show, including promotional ads, quotes and fact cards.
It also uses a series of terms, including “national security,”“international politics” and “war on terror,” that thematically connect with “The Looming Tower" to collect news stories from Twitter.
Using the platform’s Stream API, the tweets are parsed for those that contain links to relevant news outlets, then delivered to a user.
As for The Flipside's reboot, “The majority of our audience comes from mobile devices, so we're doubling down on that trend and making sure we continue to serve those users in the best way possible,” Daniel Alvarez, head of product for HuffPost, told Publishing Insider. “You will continue to see us put extra care into our mobile experiences going forward.”
The latest version classifies different media outlets according to liberal or conservative leanings. It lists stories from each source in a stacked column view.
Ideological rankings came from a 2016 study by the American Association for Public Opinion Outreach on the political stances of news outlets. However, not all news organizations featured on The Flipside were ranked in this study, so the tool doesn’t toggle for those sources.
“We find that juxtaposition of stories from different news organizations around the same topic does create an interesting narrative that allows our readers to compare and contrast, showing them the many sides of each story and helping them come up with their own conclusions,” says Alvarez.