What synonyms are there for "curate", as in (to quote here) to

select, organize, and present (suitable content, typically for online or computational use), using professional or expert knowledge

I'm from the UK – I just passed a sentence under the eyes of a US friend who said it didn't sound quite right. The best alternative we could come up with was "pick and choose".

I'm wording a press statement, so I'd like something succinct. The contexts are

Blah today introduced Blah, a revolutionary experience on the Apple® iPad that curates the best ... for the user.

Blah learns what you like, and curates streams of it for you

  • 2
    How about selects or creates depending on what it actually does.
    – Jim
    Oct 31, 2012 at 6:36
  • Would 'aggregate' suit?
    – sul4bh
    Oct 31, 2012 at 6:41
  • 3
    Curate is the correct term here. You do not need another one. It just sounds academic is all.
    – tchrist
    Oct 31, 2012 at 9:44

4 Answers 4


com·pile (the free dictionary)
tr.v. com·piled, com·pil·ing, com·piles

2. To put together or compose from materials gathered from several sources: compile an encyclopedia.

In a context where the material is not necessarily of a cultural or similar nature, compile can be used. However, note that unlike curate, compile does not include the sense of either to look after or to present.


One word I've heard used is cull. Here are a few dictionary entries:

cull to collect something such as information from different places : recipes culled from magazines 1

cull to choose or gather the best or required examples 2

cull 1. To pick out from others; select. 2. To gather; collect. 3

cull select from a large quantity; obtain from a variety of sources : anecdotes culled from Greek and Roman history 4

The word cull also implies, by picking out the best, you are also discarding the least desirable. (In fact, by culling a herd, you selectively slaughter the inferior animals; most dictionaries also make reference to this other usage of the word). Yet there is plenty of precendent for applying the word to data, as evidenced by this Google book listing.


1 from Macmillan
2 from Collins
3 from American Heritage, copied from Wordnik
4 from Oxford

  • 1
    More commonly though, the verb is used in the phrase culled from, so it directs the focus to the source than to itself or to what is actually culled or culled into.
    – Kris
    Oct 31, 2012 at 10:05
  • 1
    @Kris: most commonly, perhaps, but certainly not exclusively.
    – J.R.
    Oct 31, 2012 at 11:45
  • Three of the results on page-1 contain the cull from phrases. Rest of the seven use cull in the express sense of reduce / extract / filter, not collect / gather. We can draw the conclusions accordingly.
    – Kris
    Oct 31, 2012 at 15:06
  • @Kris: What you said describes why I like the word cull. O.P. wants a word to connote "pick and choose" - presumably, trimming down from a wealth of content, ultimately selecting the ones the user will "like." That sounds like culling to me (or maybe I misread the O.P.'s blahs and ellipses).
    – J.R.
    Oct 31, 2012 at 15:24

I ended up using variously "select", "showcase" and "compile".


Here in the U.S., I have heard the word "curate" in this sense used exclusively of art shows - "A retrospective of the paintings of Ed Ruscha, curated by So-and-so."

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