Mixx vs Propeller: One’s Going Up, the Other, well

Propeller vs MixxRecent changes at both Propeller and Mixx have pushed the inevitable forward.  Mixx, the brainchild of Chris McGill, has been poised for success for about a year now.  Propeller, the once-proud Netscape, was doomed the moment that AOL stepped into the picture.

If recent trends on Alexa (which we all know are not always accurate) give any indication about what is happening, then Mixx is making the move to become the 3rd choice amonst social media sites.  Propeller, on the other hand, is heading down, down, down as users have expressed concerns about a lack of communication from the administrators as well as a disastrous redesign that threatened to push its dwindling core of users off to another site (perhaps even Mixx). [Read more…]

News Niblets: Social Media’s Best and Worst Quality

NibletsMany people love appetizers.  They’re usually overpriced, under-portioned, and loaded with calories, but we love them anyway.  Why?  Because they’re quick, easy, and too the point.

Social media websites like Digg, Reddit, and Propeller offer the same product in the form of headlines.  We get to nibble on the news, taking it in bits and pieces, served to us through headlines that are often sensationalized or pointed.  While some people take the nibble and move on the main course by reading the full story, a good portion of us live on the appetizers.  We read the headlines, possibly read the descriptions, occasionally scan the story (or even just the first few paragraphs), then it’s back to the social media site for the next bite of news via headlines.

Some never make it past the headlines, establishing a reaction or opinion based on the nibblet.  This is good.  This is also bad. [Read more…]

The Godfather and Social Media

Vito as StumbleUpon?In many ways, the top level websites of social media can be compared to the fictional world of The Godfather.  Sounds weird?  Hear me out.

The Godfather showed us a world of beauty and corruption.  Alliances were made and broken.  Those who were good to the family were rewarded, while anyone who stepped in the way was hit.

Social media works in much the same way.  It can be beautiful, offering the best of the web compiled into loosely organized areas where masses of people can flood a worthy website and enjoy its offerings.  It can be corrupt, as spammers use the power of social media to drive traffic to unworthy websites. [Read more…]

Front Page Addiction: Destroying Families, Ruining Lives

*** As my first real parody piece, I am moving this up in the blog to see if it gets more comment luv. ***

A little-known but dangerous epidemic is spreading across members of social media websites like Digg, Reddit, Propeller, Newsvine, and Mixx.  Like a secret scourge, SM-FPA (social media front page addiction) isn’t making national headines yet, but the effects have been felt in thousands of households across the world.

“Ever since my wife’s submission hit the front page of Reddit last month, we only see her on the way to the bathroom,” said Jake Dixon.  His wife Amber, better known as “diggwho”, made the front page of Reddit with a story titled Bush makes more people mad by saying something stupid.  Since then, Amber has been submitting 15-25 stories per day and has a submission hit the front page 3-5 times per week.  She declined to be interviewed.

Research scientists at the Social Media Institute of Technology (SMIT) in Kolkata, India, say that Mr. Dixon and his family are not alone.  They have documented 342 confirmed cases of SM-FPA in 2007 and estimate the actual number in the thousands. [Read more…]

Propeller. Fail.

The reviews are starting to roll in.  There are only two possible conclusions so far: either the community will need some time to get used to the new changes over at Propeller, or the changes were a bad move.  The initial feelings of the community can best be described when you look at the current (as of 12am PST 7-23-08) top front page story.  Here is a screenshot:

Propeller New Design

Not good.  Not good at all.  And yes, for those who don’t use or haven’t been there yet, that is an actual screenshot that was actually accepted by the actual decision makers at AOL.

Impeachment Coverage – Who got it fastest?

Social News SitesWhen the news wires started buzzing, burning, and smoking about Dennis Kucinich introducing 35 letters of impeachment against President George W. Bush, we started watching the three top social media sites to see who would get the news the quickest to their front page.

As of the time of this post, it was broken 3 hours, 33 minutes ago.  We started watching the front pages of Digg, Reddit, Propeller, Newsvine, and Mixx just over 3 hours ago.  Here are the results: [Read more…]