Inside Chronicle: Curation

When we were planning Chronicle, we had to make some decisions about how the excellent content that we received would get in front of our readers. Some suggested that we allow anyone to post their stories to Chronicle. In this model, our system would allow users to vote on their favorites, see: reddit. Having users decide what becomes popular seems easy and democratic on the surface, but we took issue with the way that these voting systems don't promote diversity of ideas. In this system, the stories that would rise to the top would be those with the broadest appeal.

But we believe that much of the power of fiction is that it challenges us with new ideas and forces us to confront conflicting opinions and points of view. So we rejected the voting system on the basis that we wanted to make sure that there was a variety of story types on Chronicle. Instead we curate each story individually. We look for the stories that have a fresh point of view, stories that approach old issues from new angles. 

I know that some of the best books I've ever read were novels that I was forced to read - whether for school or at the strong request of people who are important to me. The things we wouldn't think affect us often have the strongest sway in our lives. That's why we curate - because exposure to great fiction isn't just about what's popular, it's about trying something new each time, despite the risk that it might not be for you. If you keep trying, you'll likely discover a whole new world of favorites.