Newspepper – soft launch for citizen journalism site

Newspepper, a new UK ‘citizen journalism’ site, has soft-launched its first incarnation with a number of flash videos recorded to showcase the site’s future direction. The site intends (but can’t just yet) to allow people to submit stories and multimedia, and aims to receive these by mobile as well as conventional Web methods – something of a competitive marketplace right now.

The site is the brain-child of founder Hermione Way who came up with the idea last year while training to be a journalist. She says on the site she was “frustrated at not having one place to portfolio all of her work.. in a time where you have to be a multi skilled journalist.” Had she not heard of blogs and YouTube? Just a question.

This quibble aside (and what makes the project potentially more interesting), Way appears to have secured some extremely influential advisors as both investors and backers. Michael Acton Smith, CEO and founder of interactive entertainment specialists, Mind Candy, is listed as an investor, while non-executive directors include Jim Lawn (ex-head of innovation for Microsoft in the UK), Bronwyn Kunhardt (MS UK’s former head of corporate reputation and diversity) and Paul Walsh, founder and CEO of Segala, a specialist in ‘content classification and Web based standards compliance certification’.

Not only does Hermione Way have a heavyweight board for a brand new startup, she is also relying on the advice of brother Ben Way, one of the first dot com millionaires after developing a search technology called Waysearch in the late 1990s. Useful to have.

There’s no word yet as to when the site plans a full-blown launch but in the meantime, you can check out a video about the benefits of having Bull sperm rubbed into your hair.