Letter to NYT: Where’s the trouble with curation?

Last month, the New York Times had a front page article about curation and it’s supposed “troubles”.  CEO of Curata responded in a letter to the editor to clarify legitimate uses of curation, particularly for brands and business.  The letter is shown below.


To the Editor:

In “Pinterest, Tumblr and the Trouble with ‘Curation’” (July 20, 2012), Carina Chocano concludes that reblogging of content has “a lot more in common with advertising than they do with curation.”  

Curation is simply the process of finding, organizing and sharing third party content.  When done right and ethically, a curator adds value by adding additional context and building a narrative around other content.  When done incorrectly, it can result in plagiarism and regurgitation. In many cases Pinterest and Tumblr exhibit poor curation practices by displaying a fullsize third party image with little attribution or value added context.  

On the other hand, increasingly you see many publishers and brands alike, are curating ethically and providing a valuable service by delivering the most relevant content to the right audience.  Unfortunately, Ms. Chocano ignores such uses cases completely, conflating the deficiencies of Pinterest and Tumblr, with the overall concept of curation.

Pawan Deshpande
CEO. Curata, Inc.
Cambridge, MA