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Zeen for digital magazine creation
In shopping around for a meaningful new way for students to publish their discoveries around Hamlet quotes and themes, I came upon Zeen.
A free, new platform, still in beta, Zeen allows users to curate text, video, images, and links into beautiful digital magazines, using a lovely variety of themes, fonts, colors
Developed by YouTube co-founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen, this digital space for magazine creation feels like a kind of hybrid of Pinterest, Tumblr, Paper.li, Themeefy, and Smore, the digital poster creation tool.
Like the design of Smore, Zeen is super-easy to use and allows digital publishers to continue to add modular segments. Users may integrate Flickr images and YouTube videos and develop textual context around them. A bookmarklet allows for on-the-fly curation.
Zeens display as vertical magazines, with a handy left nav bar index.
Zeens are sharable on Facebook, Google+, Delicious, and Twitter. An embed code option appearing on the dashboard, seems to embed a user’s work rather than an individual Zeen. (See the Zeen material below.)
It would be lovely if documentation traveled over into your Zeen with the media you import.
I can see lots of classroom applications for Zeen. The Terms page notes that it is for ages 13 and older. Certainly it is a platform for interactive, media-rich student writing. It can be continually updated and function as a type of blog on a global issue. We can use it to publish professional development materials. It may also serve as a new vehicle for the library monthly/annual report.
About Joyce Valenza
Joyce is an Assistant Professor of Teaching at Rutgers University School of Information and Communication, a technology writer, speaker, blogger and learner. Follow her on Twitter: @joycevalenza
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