POTD | Paul Ford’s Facebook and the Epiphanator: An End to Endings?

July 21st, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Do social networks mark the end to endings?

Paul Ford argues in this week’s New York magazine that the Facebook wall (and by extension, the Twitter stream and Google+ conversation) are bringing an end to drama, narrative, and literary closure: “The tide brings in status updates; the tide takes them out.”

This is definitely a central design (or failing) of today’s social networks. However, it’s not necessarily a preference of broader society or the always-connected consumer. People crave entertainment, and entertainment comes from drama. Curation of social feeds, algorithmic or otherwise, will increasingly need to extend beyond the basic filtering of LOLcats and checkins. Ultimately, social applications will provide consumers with context and weave together coherent stories using social feeds and content snippets and traditional dramatic devices, like beginnings and endings.

POTD | Nova Spivack’s Twitter, Facebook & Google+ Essays

July 20th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Today’s Post of the Day comes from web thinker Nova Spivack.

He wrote five essays about Twitter, Facebook and Google+ available here and, if nothing else, deserves a shout out for blogging dedication. All are worth reading, and do a good job of comparing and contrasting the three social networks. I agree that Twitter’s real strength lies as a messaging platform, Facebook’s strength lies as a general friend network, and Google+’s strength appears to lie largely as a discussion platform. As such, Google+ appears to pose the greatest potential threat to microblogs (e.g., Posterous and Tumblr) and the discussion functions of traditional blogs (e.g., Disqus) and a significant threat to specialized knowledge networks (such as Quora or StackExchange).

My favorite post of the group discusses the need for Twitter to adjust its API strategy in this new world order and return to its messaging roots.  Twitter recently has been losing support within its developer base and its recent moves towards becoming a media destination will increasingly bring it into conflict with Google and established content portals. That may prove to be a big problem for the company in the long run.

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