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…]

Propeller: Knock knock knockin’ on Reddit’s Door

RedditPropellerCompete.com’s and Alexa.com’s numbers are far from gospel, but they do offer an excellent comparative indicator for traffic. Looking at the traffic estimates and trends for Reddit and Propeller, it’s very conceivable that Propeller will overtake Reddit for the #2/#3 (depending on whether you consider StumbleUpon a social news website) position behind Digg amongst the social news powerhouse websites.

For a long time, Netscape was technically #2 in traffic, but most acknowledge that this was misleading. Many people typed in Netscape, not realizing it had become a social media website. Other sources sent traffic to Netscape, but only a small percentage used it for it’s news-based purpose. When the move to the new Propeller.com URL was announced, many believed that it spelled doom for the once-proud alternative to the Yahoo! and MSN homepages. [Read more…]