Robert Scoble offers some suggestions:
1) RSS search tools like Feedster and Pubsub. Pubsub is bringing back more results and better-formatted RSS results, but Feedster has a better Web experience.
2) Professional news sources. I watch Google News, Yahoo News, and MSN Newsbot. These sites sift through thousands of “professional” news sources like Associated Press, Reuters, BBC, and others.
3) Inbound links. I use a variety of engines to track who is linking into a specific site. Mostly I care about bloggers here, because those will be the fastest to react to news and I care about what they say.