April 11th, 2013
02:03 PM ET

Will people flip to make their own magazines?

Want to be a magazine publisher? There's an app for that.

Popular news aggregator Flipboard has launched a new version with a "curation" feature that allows anyone to run their own magazine inside the app.

Sounds cool. But why would an average joe with a smartphone want to do that?

"A lot of people have a lot to say. There is a desire to curate and organize content," says Flipboard co-creator and CEO Mike McCue.

"They don't want to create a blog, it's too technical. This gives them a very easy way to do that."

McCue says there have been "hundreds of thousands" of magazines created so far by Flipboard readers around the world on topics ranging from profesional equestrian sport to the latest research in cancer genetics.

It's a development that's prompted one media commentator to call it a major threat to established publishers akin to "a giant iceberg lurking in the path of the media."

But McCue insists he wants high quality journalism and content to thrive online, adding that "the future has never been brighter for publishers."

The Flipboard chief says the company works with over a thousand different publishers to help them reach a new generation of readers on mobile devices to "take their media operations into a new realm."

But could the smartphone-wielding news junkie supplant the publisher in both news creation and spinning money from the business?

"We are thinking about how to let individuals, the people who are curating magazines, to be able to generate revenue," admits McCue.

"But the first priority is to enable publishers whose content can get curated inside these magazines to get revenues. That's priority one, and then we will look at how individual readers can participate in that economic scenario."

Traditional media execs, you have been warned.

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