The decision to feature external music reviews and articles on its own branded platform was a major departure for the BBC. As a trusted resource on the internet, it is imperative that it maintains balance when reporting and presenting content to its audience.

This principle provided an unique challenge for the national broadcaster who saw the value to audiences of curating content from across the web and bringing it all together in one place, but needed to do so in an ethical way.

The brief for 100 Shapes was to take a sophisticated content-browsing algorithm and use it to power a custom interface that would create meaningful music discovery experiences.

We designed, built and audience-tested a Project Freebird module with its own visual identity that summarises and presents a clear balance of music news and criticism. We conducted regular usability testing with members of the target audience to make sure that design consistently met the needs of the users.

Feedback on the recent pilot has been highly positive from audiences and stakeholders, and shown that the BBC can offer a quality curatorial service while safeguarding its own brand. The BBC is considering other ways in which Freebird can be applied across its wider digital innovation strategy.

Laptop in use on BBC Music webpage Man pointing at wall full of mobile designs