TechMeme, not quite Google News

TechMeme really wants to be Google News, it seems. I see less and less blogs on TechMeme lately and more and more “professional news.”

The problem with that shift is that Google News already does “professional news” a lot better than TechMeme. For instance, do you find a single story about Sun Microsystems’ new blade servers on TechMeme? No. But you find 23 (and more coming every minute) over on Google News.

The problem with Google News is that it doesn’t recognize single bloggers, but only teams. And I don’t see any video yet on Google News (I have the only video I’ve seen of the press conference so far).

But, this shows you that there still isn’t one place you can go to get all the tech news that’s happening in the world today. That’s yet another reason I read so many feeds. Someone will bring me the important news, I just have to dig for it.

Anyway, today I’ll be on Cranky Geeks. So, consider this my cranky geek rant of the day. :-)

Comments

  1. I agree wholeheartedly. More and more as I skim over TechMeMe I think “I’ve already read that today (or yesterday) via Google News”.

  2. I agree wholeheartedly. More and more as I skim over TechMeMe I think “I’ve already read that today (or yesterday) via Google News”.

  3. I don’t have strong opinion on the issue in regards to Techmeme, likely because I’m a relatively new user.

    But overall, I agree with the sentiment that blogs are not represented as well. I’d love to be able to mix news and blogs together as it would show that most non-pr driven news is begins in the blogosphere.

    In regards to Google, I point to my follow on to your January post on a closely related issue!
    http://www.daviddalka.com/createvalue/2007/01/29/making-it-easier-for-blogs-to-link-to-blogs-instead-of-news-sites/

    With Google’s new layout, I don’t understand why blogs aren’t be one click away using that white space on top instead of two from both a visibility and user experience standpoint. Last Summer when Google migrated Video to the homepage, it caused a spike of traffic to that service. I would like to hope that Google would consider doing the same with blogs!

  4. I don’t have strong opinion on the issue in regards to Techmeme, likely because I’m a relatively new user.

    But overall, I agree with the sentiment that blogs are not represented as well. I’d love to be able to mix news and blogs together as it would show that most non-pr driven news is begins in the blogosphere.

    In regards to Google, I point to my follow on to your January post on a closely related issue!
    http://www.daviddalka.com/createvalue/2007/01/29/making-it-easier-for-blogs-to-link-to-blogs-instead-of-news-sites/

    With Google’s new layout, I don’t understand why blogs aren’t be one click away using that white space on top instead of two from both a visibility and user experience standpoint. Last Summer when Google migrated Video to the homepage, it caused a spike of traffic to that service. I would like to hope that Google would consider doing the same with blogs!

  5. Techmeme actually wants to be a selection of interesting Tech news stories. A particular take on “what matters”, suitable for a particular audience.

    In many ways, it wants to be the anti-Google News, though it other ways it needs to be more like it.

    I’m agnostic on professional vs. amateur. Ideally, whoever has the best take on the story for Techmeme’s readers should be the one appearing.

    Techmeme often comes out ahead when people compare it to Google News (recently on Read/Write Web, earlier on eWeek). Though to be fair, these kinds of comparisons are usually done by people who BROWSE tech news. People who do mainly news searches will clearly find Google News superior because Google offers an excellent news search while Techmeme offers none. (And Techmeme indexes fewer sites in the first place.)

    BTW, I personally give the advantage to Techmeme on the blade server story, which sounds rather boring, something best passed over. Is the fact that you covered it for Podtech affecting your judgement in this case?

  6. Techmeme actually wants to be a selection of interesting Tech news stories. A particular take on “what matters”, suitable for a particular audience.

    In many ways, it wants to be the anti-Google News, though it other ways it needs to be more like it.

    I’m agnostic on professional vs. amateur. Ideally, whoever has the best take on the story for Techmeme’s readers should be the one appearing.

    Techmeme often comes out ahead when people compare it to Google News (recently on Read/Write Web, earlier on eWeek). Though to be fair, these kinds of comparisons are usually done by people who BROWSE tech news. People who do mainly news searches will clearly find Google News superior because Google offers an excellent news search while Techmeme offers none. (And Techmeme indexes fewer sites in the first place.)

    BTW, I personally give the advantage to Techmeme on the blade server story, which sounds rather boring, something best passed over. Is the fact that you covered it for Podtech affecting your judgement in this case?

  7. “Anyway, today I’ll be on Cranky Geeks. So, consider this my cranky geek rant of the day. ”

    Holy caca!!! :-)

  8. “Anyway, today I’ll be on Cranky Geeks. So, consider this my cranky geek rant of the day. ”

    Holy caca!!! :-)

  9. Gabe said “Techmeme actually wants to be a selection of interesting Tech news stories. A particular take on “what matters”, suitable for a particular audience.”

    Wake us when Techmeme posts non-English news.

  10. Gabe said “Techmeme actually wants to be a selection of interesting Tech news stories. A particular take on “what matters”, suitable for a particular audience.”

    Wake us when Techmeme posts non-English news.

  11. https://secure.e-registernow.com/cgi-bin/mkpayment.cgi?MID=280&state=step2direct&event=3126225984783

    This won’t show up in any of your RSS feeds Scoble, but it may interest your readers. This is a convention in Montreal on how to get money from Venture Capitalists. The Development Bank of Canada turned us down because quote “We recently invested in http://www.nitix.com/, and we find that Linux based ventures are beyond our understanding.” Needless to say I checked out the “sources” and it was just Debian linux with a couple tiny packages more. The Debian sources were not even posted and I reported it to the FSF for GPL violation.

    At any rate, this is a prime example that VC and risk capital is truly disconnected from reality or good sense. It really is about how well you can project dreamlike falsehoods on pie charts.

    Getting past that I think it would be good for a few people to join me and educate these people so that one day they may see past their noses.

    We didn’t get VC and we’re still doing fine. That’s because we’re better at making money than writing business plans. Though I must say I was very partial to our nice BP.

  12. https://secure.e-registernow.com/cgi-bin/mkpayment.cgi?MID=280&state=step2direct&event=3126225984783

    This won’t show up in any of your RSS feeds Scoble, but it may interest your readers. This is a convention in Montreal on how to get money from Venture Capitalists. The Development Bank of Canada turned us down because quote “We recently invested in http://www.nitix.com/, and we find that Linux based ventures are beyond our understanding.” Needless to say I checked out the “sources” and it was just Debian linux with a couple tiny packages more. The Debian sources were not even posted and I reported it to the FSF for GPL violation.

    At any rate, this is a prime example that VC and risk capital is truly disconnected from reality or good sense. It really is about how well you can project dreamlike falsehoods on pie charts.

    Getting past that I think it would be good for a few people to join me and educate these people so that one day they may see past their noses.

    We didn’t get VC and we’re still doing fine. That’s because we’re better at making money than writing business plans. Though I must say I was very partial to our nice BP.

  13. Robert: Are you sure TechMeme’s mission is the same as Google’s, just with a narrower scope?

    Are you sure you, in particular, are the kind of user TechMeme was built for?

    Perhaps either are true, I’m not a frequent user of the site either, but until you’ve answered those 2 questions, you can’t compare the two to your own needs.

  14. Robert: Are you sure TechMeme’s mission is the same as Google’s, just with a narrower scope?

    Are you sure you, in particular, are the kind of user TechMeme was built for?

    Perhaps either are true, I’m not a frequent user of the site either, but until you’ve answered those 2 questions, you can’t compare the two to your own needs.

  15. Maybe theres just very few people in the world who give a damn about Sun announcing a very tiny evolution of a product that real people dont use?

  16. Maybe theres just very few people in the world who give a damn about Sun announcing a very tiny evolution of a product that real people dont use?

  17. I have to agree with Gabe. I’m glad I don’t have to read about every hardware company’s new product launch on TechMeme.

    And I’m always pleasantly surprised at some of the geek news that makes it there. Speaking of which, today there was a link to the newest version of Emacs on TechMeme. I need to install that this weekend. :)

  18. I have to agree with Gabe. I’m glad I don’t have to read about every hardware company’s new product launch on TechMeme.

    And I’m always pleasantly surprised at some of the geek news that makes it there. Speaking of which, today there was a link to the newest version of Emacs on TechMeme. I need to install that this weekend. :)

  19. Dare: most readers on the Internet don’t care about software development and therefor don’t care about Emacs. I agree that getting a new Emacs is important news, though, for the same reason that new Sun servers are important: +someone+ does care.

    You’re telling me that Sun won’t sell any of these blade servers? That a CTO doesn’t care about them? Right.

    Anyway, the gestures Gabe is sending to the world is TechMeme is gonna be great as long as you care only about “popular” and “professional” news. That’s cool.

    I’d rather hang out on Google News where they cover not only the popular professional news, but also the unpopular.

    Me, that alone explains why I read feeds to learn what’s really happening in the industry.

    I guess we’re going to get more iPhone blog storming on TechMeme! :-)

  20. Dare: most readers on the Internet don’t care about software development and therefor don’t care about Emacs. I agree that getting a new Emacs is important news, though, for the same reason that new Sun servers are important: +someone+ does care.

    You’re telling me that Sun won’t sell any of these blade servers? That a CTO doesn’t care about them? Right.

    Anyway, the gestures Gabe is sending to the world is TechMeme is gonna be great as long as you care only about “popular” and “professional” news. That’s cool.

    I’d rather hang out on Google News where they cover not only the popular professional news, but also the unpopular.

    Me, that alone explains why I read feeds to learn what’s really happening in the industry.

    I guess we’re going to get more iPhone blog storming on TechMeme! :-)

  21. Joost: TechMeme was interesting to me when it first came out (I was one of the first people, if not the first to talk about TechMeme) BECAUSE it covered what BLOGGERS were talking about and writing.

    Lately it’s turned a lot closer into being a Google News competitor. Gabe is trying to make it be an authoritative news source, not a good place to see interesting new blog opinions.

    So, it’s moving away from what attracted me in the first place and toward a much more mass market thing.

    I’m sure that’s a better business to be in (the audience on Google News is many times larger than TechMeme’s) but it sure is less interesting to me and many other bloggers, which explains why I’ve been getting 10x more traffic from RSS aggregators than from TechMeme lately.

  22. Joost: TechMeme was interesting to me when it first came out (I was one of the first people, if not the first to talk about TechMeme) BECAUSE it covered what BLOGGERS were talking about and writing.

    Lately it’s turned a lot closer into being a Google News competitor. Gabe is trying to make it be an authoritative news source, not a good place to see interesting new blog opinions.

    So, it’s moving away from what attracted me in the first place and toward a much more mass market thing.

    I’m sure that’s a better business to be in (the audience on Google News is many times larger than TechMeme’s) but it sure is less interesting to me and many other bloggers, which explains why I’ve been getting 10x more traffic from RSS aggregators than from TechMeme lately.

  23. Robert,
    It weird to compare the traffic from RSS aggregators to the traffic from a single site. TechCrunch has over 300K people reading it via RSS. I’m pretty sure there are few sites that can send Arrington more traffic than he can get from people who are already subscribed to his feed.

    PS: You only have A-list bloggers like yourself to blame for the content on TechMeme. Most A-list bloggers simply regurgitate and hype the same merger and product announcements from big companies that you can get from the mainstream tech press. Why should TechMeme link to some second hand opinions of the news when they can link to the original news articles?

  24. Robert,
    It weird to compare the traffic from RSS aggregators to the traffic from a single site. TechCrunch has over 300K people reading it via RSS. I’m pretty sure there are few sites that can send Arrington more traffic than he can get from people who are already subscribed to his feed.

    PS: You only have A-list bloggers like yourself to blame for the content on TechMeme. Most A-list bloggers simply regurgitate and hype the same merger and product announcements from big companies that you can get from the mainstream tech press. Why should TechMeme link to some second hand opinions of the news when they can link to the original news articles?

  25. Dare: I find quite a bit of stuff on blogs that doesn’t get on mainstream press. My link blog is pretty different from what you see on TechMeme. And I disagree about your thesis anyway. Most A-list bloggers don’t cover the big companies much at all (except when it’s “exciting,” er, Web-oriented, or consumer-oriented gadgets).

  26. Dare: I find quite a bit of stuff on blogs that doesn’t get on mainstream press. My link blog is pretty different from what you see on TechMeme. And I disagree about your thesis anyway. Most A-list bloggers don’t cover the big companies much at all (except when it’s “exciting,” er, Web-oriented, or consumer-oriented gadgets).

  27. Me, I’m still shaking my head, trying to figure out that cluster of stories on Britney Spears which was up on Techmeme over the weekend, how’d that happen anyway…? ;-)

    jd

  28. Me, I’m still shaking my head, trying to figure out that cluster of stories on Britney Spears which was up on Techmeme over the weekend, how’d that happen anyway…? ;-)

    jd

  29. Scoble said “TechMeme was interesting to me when it first came out (I was one of the first people, if not the first to talk about TechMeme) BECAUSE it covered what BLOGGERS were talking about and writing.”

    No, this has never been the definition of Techmeme. The definition from the horse’s mouse is : a SV tech news paper.

  30. Scoble said “TechMeme was interesting to me when it first came out (I was one of the first people, if not the first to talk about TechMeme) BECAUSE it covered what BLOGGERS were talking about and writing.”

    No, this has never been the definition of Techmeme. The definition from the horse’s mouse is : a SV tech news paper.

  31. “For instance, do you find a single story about Sun Microsystems’ new blade servers on TechMeme?”

    Maybe because the world is much larger than your sheltered Silicon Valley? There are other things happening…

  32. “For instance, do you find a single story about Sun Microsystems’ new blade servers on TechMeme?”

    Maybe because the world is much larger than your sheltered Silicon Valley? There are other things happening…

  33. I thought the whole addddvvvvantage of TechMeme, was that it WASN’T Google News, voice of the blogger, blah blah blah. Poorly thought-out argument, wrapped up in an infomerical sandwich. You will kick up some dust with that one. Have fun. ;)

  34. I thought the whole addddvvvvantage of TechMeme, was that it WASN’T Google News, voice of the blogger, blah blah blah. Poorly thought-out argument, wrapped up in an infomerical sandwich. You will kick up some dust with that one. Have fun. ;)

  35. Is Gabe saying that he is making judgements on what he thinks is boring. The sun story appearing on techmeme based upon conversations about it NOT what Gabe thinks. I don’t go to Techmeme because of Gabe’s ability to decide what’s right but instead what bloggers are saying.

    Gabe needs to rethink his position on this.

    Robert: did you do an analysis to see if the Sun story was talked about?

  36. Is Gabe saying that he is making judgements on what he thinks is boring. The sun story appearing on techmeme based upon conversations about it NOT what Gabe thinks. I don’t go to Techmeme because of Gabe’s ability to decide what’s right but instead what bloggers are saying.

    Gabe needs to rethink his position on this.

    Robert: did you do an analysis to see if the Sun story was talked about?