When it comes to social media, there is always a cool new tool to check out.
Today, I am pleased to interview Misha Leybovich, one of the creators of Meograph. Launched a few months ago, the service allows users to harnesses the power of maps, timeline, links, and multimedia to create interactive stories that can be shared with the world.
Cendrine Marrouat: Hello Misha, thank you for answering my questions. First, would you tell us a little about you? .
Misha Leybovich: I am a former business consultant at McKinsey, aerospace engineer at MIT, and student body president at Berkeley.
My co-founder Francis Escuadro has been a hacker since high school, we became friends in undergrad, and he went to film school at Emerson.
CM: Is there a particular event that triggered your desire to create Meograph? And why such a name?
ML: I was frustrated that I had no way to tell my own dynamic digital stories, not being a multimedia professional. Meograph grew from that.
The name is meant to be evocative of “Me” meaning that it is accessible to anyone and “graph” meaning some sort of visualization … plus the .com and Twitter handle were available :)
CM: What makes Meograph different from a tool like Storify?
ML: Storify is for pulling media into articles. Meograph is for pulling media into video.
CM: The site is divided into two areas: Journalism and Education. What are the main differences?
ML: The site isn’t really divided: those are just two landing pages to highlight specific use cases. We will be rolling out more of those soon, for Tourism, Weddings, etc. It’s all one site, and there will always be a free version, though we will soon offer paid licenses that will appeal to different use cases based on their different premium features.
CM: You launched the platform at the end of July 2012. How many people currently use the platform?
ML: We are at about 9,000 users and growing fast.
CM: How do people leverage Meograph? Do they only use the site to cover news stories?
ML: Journalists are embedding Meographs to scale the amount of interactive video content they need. Educators are creating Meographs for lessons, and assigning students to create their own. Tourism professionals and Travelers are making itineraries and trips come to life. Individuals and couples are telling their life and love stories.
CM: With digital storytelling taking so much precedence in social media, what role do you expect Meogaph to play?
ML: We aim to be the easiest way to pull together all the media people produce into narrative stories.
CM: Is there anything else you would like to add?
ML: Just that we are always hungry for frank feedback, and are very receptive and responsive to our users … they are who we learn from!
For more information on Meograph, visit http://www.meograph.com.