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In depth news analysis with AYLIEN News API

Introduction

Our News API is much more than just a news aggregator. It collects news based on a variety of different search criteria: keywords, entities, categories, sentiment and so on. However it’s the ability to index and analyze the content sourced that makes the News API extremely powerful.

Whether you’re pushing data from the News API into an app, resurfacing the analysis in a news feed or building intuitive dashboards with the data extracted, the News API allows you to get a deep understanding for what is happening in the news on a near real time basis.

Our News API has a variety of analysis focused endpoints that allow our users to make sense of the data extracted from news content in a meaningful way. In this blog we’ll talk you through some of the features/endpoints that can help you dive into the stories you collect with the News API and the data extracted. We’ll introduce the endpoints that our News API users leverage to;

  • Track events over time
  • Spot Trends in news content
  • Compare sources and author’s opinion
  • Monitor coverage of the same or similar stories across the web

Leveraging time stamped data: /time_series

Simply put, a Time Series is a sequence of data points plotted over a period of time. Our Time Series endpoint is used when you want to analyze a set of data points relative to a certain timeframe. This makes it easier to analyze timestamped data and means the data can be easily visualized in a meaningful way.

We’ve included a simple example below where we’ve used the Time Series endpoint to understand the volume of stories over a given time period. You’ll also notice in the example that we’ve used the Time Series endpoint to track how the polarity or sentiment of stories changes over time, not just the volume.

 

 

Our customers are using this to monitor how something like a topic, entities or even a particular article might be talked about on social media over a certain time period. It helps them spot stories or topics that might be quickly gathering pace online, hinting at their popularity, importance and virality. We even have users utilising the Time Series endpoint combined with others to identify when is the best time to post articles of a particular nature, for example, posting Personal Finance categorised articles at the end of a fiscal quarter versus mid quarter.

Visit our documentation for more info on the Time Series endpoint.

Working with numerical data points and metrics: /histograms

A histogram is a graph which represents the distribution of numerical data. Our histogram endpoint allows you to get an aggregated profile of a certain metric. It’s up to you which metric you use.

 

 

Above we’ve shared two sample graphs we built with data extracted using the Histogram endpoint. We’ve graphed the number of social shares per story and the length of articles in words sourced through the API.

Our News API customers use this feature to uncover insights like what content categories are most popular across social media or how many words does an author tend to use when writing about a certain topic, which is useful if you’re sending them a news tip for instance.

Visit our documentation for more info on the Histograms endpoint.

Uncovering useful insights: /trends

The Trends endpoint is designed to make it easier to identify most frequently appearing entities, keywords and topical or sentiment-related categories. Meaning you can analyze how often something occurs in the content you source through the API.

You can use the Trends endpoint to monitor the frequency of Categories, Entities and Keywords in the results sourced from the API. For example, you would use the Trends endpoint if you wanted to identify the most mentioned entities from a collection of news articles or the frequency of content category in a collection of articles.

 

 

This endpoint enables our News API users to get a better understanding of topics and mentions of people, organizations, and places in news stories, as shown in the example above. It also means you can conduct distribution or quantitative focused analyses on say, the breakdown of one topic or category to another, or the overall sentiment of articles, as shown in the pie charts below.

Visit our documentation for more info on the Trends endpoint.

Story Coverages and finding related articles: /coverages & /related_stories

The Coverages and Related Stories endpoints provides a 360 degree view on the news reactions to a story. They are designed to provide an easy way for our News API users to source news articles covering the same story. Our users utilize both endpoints in different ways and for a variety of different reasons.

Coverages: Coverages allows you to understand the reach an article has from a news coverage point of view. Our PR focused users utilize this endpoint to get an understanding for how well a press release is performing, based on the number of Coverages it’s had.

Visit our documentation for more info on the Coverages endpoint.

Related Stories: Related Stories looks for semantically similar articles, which are those articles that might be covering the same story or dealing with the same topic. It provides an understanding for how a news story is breaking and the overall reach of a story.

When combined with other parameters like location source or author, it can be used to compare how coverage of the same story might differ between geographical regions or an author’s angle.

Note: Both the Related Stories and Coverages endpoint support GET and POST methods. This means you can provide a URL or Raw text as your input to the News API.

Our API users use this feature to identify related articles to those sourced in their search or from existing text or news articles by passing a URL or the raw text of an article.

As you can see below we’ve used the Related Stories endpoint to source related news content based on the text of a tweet. The API provides a number of semantically similar stories in it’s results.

Input:

 

Output:

 

Visit our documentation for more info on the Related endpoint.

We hope this gives you a better understanding for how our News API can provide you with an intelligent way of sourcing and analyzing news conent at scale.

 




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Author


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Mike Waldron

Head of Marketing & Sales @ AYLIEN A legal convert with a masters degree from Smurfit Business School, Mike runs our Sales and Marketing at AYLIEN. Mike gathered his Sales and Marketing experience with technology companies in Sydney and Dublin before getting the startup itch and joining the team at AYLIEN. Twitter: @MikeWallly