Zeen (@zeen_com on Twitter) is a free, online platform in beta for creating digital magazines. The website lets you quickly pull photos from Flickr, Instagram, Facebook, as well as videos from YouTube and integrate them into slick, multi-page online magazines. Today I created a travelog magazine about our family’s recent fall break adventures titled, “Boston & Maine: Fall Break 2012 Highlights & Memories.” The screenshot below doesn’t do the platform justice: Visit the actual website to scroll down pages and use the navigational table of contents links on the left and right sidebars to move within the document.
I LOVED how easy it was to copy and paste Flickr links and YouTube links and integrate them together in a magazine-like format. My main requests for missing features in Zeen at this point are:
- I’d like to be able to add hyperlinks within text boxes, but that’s not currently possible.
- I’d like an option to privately share Zeens with an unpublished link. I would consider creating our family Christmas card this year on Zeen if the links could be unlisted, but currently that isn’t an available option.
- It would be nice if Zeens were embeddable. Currently, embed code is not provided/available.
I love that Zeens are iOS compatible so they work and look great on iPads / iPhones / iPod Touches as well as on ‘standard’ computer web browsers. I didn’t try it today, but I’m thinking it’s also possible to CREATE Zeens on an iOS device since they are entirely browser-based and apparently very HTML5 friendly.
Check out Zeen.com, it’s one of the easiest websites I’ve used to date for creating “digital newspaper” style websites. What other websites have you used that you like for creating “digital newspapers?” GlogsterEDU and aXmag are two other options I’ve seen in action but not used extensively myself. Scribd creates web-based versions of files like PDFs, but I wouldn’t consider its files “digital newspapers” in the same way Zeen, Glogster and aXmag work.
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