Longreads founder Mark Armstrong is bringing his long-form journalism curation skills to Read It Later, where he is signing on as editorial advisor.
Armstrong launched Longreads, a feed of long stories “best enjoyed away from your desk” (long-form journalism, short stories, interview transcripts, historical documents, etc.), in 2009 as a Twitter feed and hashtag; a year later, he launched Longreads.com. Users share stories by tweeting them with the hashtag #longreads, and publishers like The Atlantic, Vanity Fair and The Awl now tag their longer pieces that way. The website lists the best of the stories and also includes a raw feed with all the stories being tweeted.
Read It Later, founded in 2007 by Nate Weiner, is an app that lets users save web content to one list to read or watch later. As of July 2011, it has over 3.5 million users. As its editorial advisor, Armstrong will be “working with publishers, curators and creators to help them use the platform in new ways,” he says. “Time-shifting, obviously, has been great for the revival of in-depth storytelling. So it seemed what we were individually working on was complementary.”
Read It Later competitors include Instapaper and, as reported by the NYT’s Bits today, a new service from Evernote called Clearly. Read It Later has the chance to stand out by adding additional editorial features to its offerings.
On the Longreads Tumblr, Armstrong says his site “will continue as it always has, serving our growing community of readers, curators, authors and publishers, and continuing to improve our service. There’s obviously a lot that we’ll be able to build with the help of the Read It Later team, and their support means we can continue to grow.”