ppi Media has developed a new content portal for Schwäbisch Media known as StoryBox, a structured system that allows sports and music clubs, schools, churches and other local institutions to provide the editorial team with content for the regional editions of the Schwäbische Zeitung. User-generated content in the form of reports from local institutions such as clubs, schools and churches are an important feature of the Schwäbische Zeitung and its regional editions – both in print and digital. In the past, users would send this content to the Schwäbische Zeitung ideally via email, but sometimes even by post or fax, which meant the editors had to spend a lot of time manually processing the content within their editorial workflows. The texts and images had to be manually imported into the editorial system, and then complex adjustments usually had to be made to the text lengths. Furthermore, it was often difficult to clarify the legal basis for the use of images.
The StoryBox as a tailored project development
That’s why Schwäbisch Media’s long-standing technology partner, ppi Media, was commissioned in spring 2021 to develop a digital user portal that could be used to submit content to the editorial team in a structured manner. The features, user concept and design were jointly coordinated in workshops before the final product was implemented. Following an initial trial phase in the summer months, the portal went live in the fall. The browser-based StoryBox allows users to send three different lengths of articles to the editorial team. The portal contains explanatory information as to which format is suitable for each type of article. It is also possible to submit image material; a sufficient resolution is ensured and users have to confirm that they are legally entitled to use the content before uploading it. Once the material has been uploaded, the content is automatically imported and made available as a complete article in the editorial system.
“We’re thrilled with the new portal. Our editors now only need around a fifth of the time to create a full newspaper page from content submitted by local sports clubs or other institutions. We commissioned ppi Media to develop the portal, because we’ve been really impressed with the company’s customer-oriented services for many years. The StoryBox project was implemented as another custom development in the quality we’ve come to expect from ppi Media,” says Hagen Schönherr, Editorial Transformation manager at Schwäbischer Verlag GmbH & Co. KG.
Following the go-live, ppi Media’s team remains on hand to offer the operators sound advice and support for the StoryBox. This will continue to ensure reliable operations for this important component of daily production in the future.