Tag Archives: Twitter

Big shifts in microblog/social networking world

What a week in the microblog world.

First Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg had a ton of really nasty articles written about him after his CFO left and was replaced. My take? Zuck got the service to 200 million and he’s one of the smartest businesspeople I’ve met. He’s also young and has definite ideas of where he’d like to take Facebook. He also has investors that he has to listen to at least a little bit. Add all that up and it’s a spot I’m glad I’m not in. That said Zuckerberg and crew are so close to the gold that their metal detectors must be going nuts. Now they have to execute and get show us how they are going to add businesses to the social graph and also how they are going to build public entities so that they can take the hype away from Twitter. If they get those two done, they’ll cash in big time. But those are two big ifs, especially if there are major management troubles like what some of the bloggers are sensing.

The second big shift this week was Mike Arrington’s reporting that Twitter is in talks with Google to be sold for a quarter billion dollars. First, disclosure: I really don’t like Twitter’s management team. I think they have more problems than Zuckerberg. They treat their community even worse than Facebook does. Their technology has been horrid (and still has major problems, when I refresh Twitter 100 times I see a Fail Whale at least five times, if not more). But, no one can argue the fact that Twitter has gotten more PR in the past 30 days than any other company I can remember getting in the past year. Everytime I turn on TV or Radio lately I hear “we just Tweeted.” That alone is worth a ton and they deserve to be compensated for yet again building a great brand. Why does Google want Twitter? Easy, search features. How did I learn about the Chinese earthquake? Well, that was by accident (I was the first American to tell someone else about the earthquake) because I follow so many people. But what did I do after that? I went to http://search.twitter.com and started watching what everyone was saying about the earthquake. Today tons of people do that or use tools like Twhirl and Tweetdeck to do those searches.

Lots of my friends think that this search behavior will let Microsoft get back into the search game if Microsoft bought Twitter. Heck, Todd Bishop just wrote that too. Unfortunately Steve Ballmer doesn’t understand Twitter (he isn’t on it and probably thinks that’s yet another stupid thing that Scoble uses) so he probably won’t see the value here. Ballmer has done a horrid job at getting Microsoft into the search game, so I’ll be shocked if he wakes up and buys Twitter. Of course just by saying that I probably made Ev and Biz a few hundred million dollars more — if Microsoft and Google get into a bidding war valuations on Twitter could go up to a billion or more. Pretty rich territory for a service that has only 10 million users in the United States.

The third shift? It actually is coming on Monday as friendfeed brings out a completely new UI. I saw it last night and I’m still stunned (mostly in a good way, but change is always exhausting). I’m not sure I’ll like it all, but you’ll definitely want to watch the video I shot of the press conference and I will have a LOT more to say on this on Monday morning. I’m under embargo until Monday, but the video is long and they go into tons of details about the new UI and their business.

What a week in social networking/microblogging. Can’t wait to see what happens next.

Why Rob Diana is right: Twitter gets the hype while Facebook will get the gold

Rob Diana just wrote “Sorry Twitter, Facebook is The Data Gold Mine.”

First, let’s go back to Ronn Owens. He’s a talk show host on KGO Radio. Actually, he’s the #1 rated talk show on the #1 station in San Francisco (if you exclude nationally-syndicated radio guys like Limbaugh). I was listening the day he discovered Twitter. He resisted at first (a guest told him he MUST be on Twitter, because it’s a good way to let his listeners know what’s coming up). The next day he announced that he had joined Twitter to his audience. I was follower #24 (he now has 558). I joined about 20 minutes after his announcement because I was driving. It was amazing to me that he had only gotten 24 followers in that time, which demonstrates the lack of engagement of a talk radio audience, but I’m getting off track.

What got him onto Twitter? (He’s talked about it several times since). Its publicness.

This is what is driving Twitter’s hype. See, for a celebrity like Owens, or a brand like CNN (which has several accounts on Twitter) the publicness of Twitter is like crack. Facebook might have more users, but it’s hard to be “public” on Facebook. Google’s spiders (the software that indexes web pages) can’t get into Facebook easily while those same spiders eat up Twitter.

The “publicness” of Twitter makes a TON of sense for someone like Ronn Owens who wants to reach a world-wide audience with very little work. Facebook makes less sense because it’s not only more work (there’s a lot more to do on Facebook than just write simple text messages from a cell phone) but it isn’t as public so it’s harder to get new followers.

But this is exactly why people tell me they use Facebook instead of Twitter. So, Facebook has the numbers (about 180 million for Facebook vs. about 10 million for Twitter). It is also why Rob Diana is right: people will put more intimate stuff, like having a baby, into Facebook rather than Twitter.

Only weirdos like me like sharing intimate stuff in a public forum and having conversations. Hint: for every weirdo like me, there are 1000 who are like my wife and only want to discuss that stuff with their “true friends.”

Which brings me back to Rob Diana’s point. It’s those intimate details that will bring advertising opportunities. “I’m having a baby shower in San Francisco at the Hyatt” is the type of thing normal people will share in Facebook with their friends but will never think of sharing in Twitter. Yet that’s the kind of information that a brand like the Hyatt needs to engage with you.

When I went to Las Vegas recently and said I was staying in the Luxor, someone got back to me at the Luxor on Twitter and said something like “let me know if I can help you, I can get you show tickets and make reservations for you.”

This kind of customer intimacy will be far more prevalent over on Facebook because WE are far more intimate there.

Rob is right, I wonder how Twitter is going to shift to get us to be more intimate with sharing the intimate details of our lives?

Oh, and I wonder how Facebook is going to keep us sharing the intimate details of our lives as it tries to add businesses to the social graph? The first time some business answers back a Facebooker like the Luxor did to me on Twitter they might get freaked out, so Facebook has to be careful here.

So, why would Facebook get any money from the Luxor? I can see a ton of ways. Can’t you?

Think of the Yellow Pages. Simple listings are free there (or were back when I advertised in the 1980s). But bigger ads that are more impressive cost thousands per month. Use that model on Facebook. Imagine a brand, like Luxor, just wants to say hi. That’s free. But how about post a link? That’ll be $4 please. And on and on.

Doing comments first on Twitter with Twickie

OK, so, what is the tool I was using earlier in the evening to get lots of responses from my Twitter followers and copy and paste them into my blog? Chris Pirillo’s Twickie.

How does it work?

I ask a question on Twitter.

People respond.

I log into Twickie. It lets me see the tweets I’ve posted. I click on a down arrow to see all responses.

I copy the HTML out of Twickie and I paste it into my blog editor’s HTML mode.

Real easy. Free. And demonstrates how you can use a crowd to do research.

Earlier tonight Chris told me it lets him write blog posts “backward.” See in the old world we’d write our opinions, then you’d comment. In Pirillo’s world you comment first, then he writes his blog post.

It’s a weird world and it’s Friday night, so I went with it and was amazed at the responses I got in just a few short minutes.

Thank you for participating. I’ll try other questions soon, I don’t want to overdo it.

Test of a new Twitter tool — paste replies

Have you ever wanted to ask your Twitter followers a question, like what Twitter tool do they use on the iPhone, but wanted to aggregate all their answers into a single post? I did too. Here’s my first test. Literally four minutes ago I asked that question of my followers and here’s all the replies that came in in the first few minutes:

KMuncie: TwiterFon is the best!
about 33 minutes ago
weekofstyle: twitterfon hands down….
about 33 minutes ago
KrnSidez: tweetie.
about 33 minutes ago
GraftFinder: twitterfon
about 32 minutes ago
pinwinomuerto: Tweetie.
about 32 minutes ago
jamesfrye82: My favorite twitter iPhone app is tweetie.
about 32 minutes ago
gordonkennedy: Tweetie
about 32 minutes ago
jongot: Test of new Twitter tool coming soon: which Twitter iPhone app do you like best? (Tweetdeck & Tweetie).
about 32 minutes ago
mal: twitterrific
about 32 minutes ago
terrysimpson: thiS one is ok
about 32 minutes ago
Avibm: twitterrific
about 31 minutes ago
45px 0;" />
emonome: Tweetie.
about 31 minutes ago
TTIK: wats an iphone lol, only joking, don&#39t have an iphone, sadly i&#39m stationary, @ home
about 31 minutes ago
terrysimpson: this also is good
about 31 minutes ago
joekirk: Tweetie.
about 31 minutes ago
gregisenberg: Definitely TwitterFon, its the closest app to TweetDeck!
about 31 minutes ago
doverbey: Tweetie rocks! What&#39s your answer Robert?
about 31 minutes ago
yoshxl: tweetie.
about 31 minutes ago
luke_irvin: Tweetie
about 31 minutes ago
kbodnar32: tweetie
about 31 minutes ago
chrispirillo: – I&#39ve started to use #Twitterfon over Hahlo. It&#39s not bad (not perfect, but has promise). @frojive recommended it.
about 30 minutes ago
alexsetter: Tweetie
about 30 minutes ago
Attitude: Tweetie is my favorite iPhone Twitter app.
about 30 minutes ago
megbear: liking tweetie (on your suggestion)
about 30 minutes ago
CoreJay: Test of new Twitter tool coming soon: which Twitter iPhone app do you like best? (via @Scobleizer) [I use Tweetie the most. -C]
about 30 minutes ago
chimoose: tweetie. But I love that Twitterific “starts at the bottom”
about 30 minutes ago
tiphereth: Tweetie all the way :)
about 30 minutes ago
typezero3: twittlelator pro?
about 29 minutes ago
jivebotic: TwitterFon (free)
about 29 minutes ago
susielin: TwitterFon
about 29 minutes ago
cyndibrigham: I&#39m using Twitterific, so far so good. Is there something new coming out?!!
about 29 minutes ago
tackyspoons: Tweetie!
about 29 minutes ago
photar: twitterfon is best for actual tweeting. @tweetie is otherwise the best.
about 28 minutes ago
4px 15px 45px 0;" />
aaronishere: TwitterFon. The app does what it needs to do… and for free.
about 28 minutes ago
SameerPatel: i think Twitterfon is the best free one. has RT, DM, and good nav options. i switched from twitterific
about 28 minutes ago
peterschloss: Twitterfon when I have not been on twitter for several hours as it updates 200 msgs. Tweetie when I have been using it
about 28 minutes ago
ShanL: free would be twitterfon but paying I heard tweetie is good.
about 28 minutes ago
JRegner: RT: Test of new Twitter tool coming soon: which Twitter iPhone app do you like best? (Tweetie).
about 28 minutes ago
cmdrcool: twitterfon rulez!!!! 1000x better than tweeti or anything else.
about 27 minutes ago
edcallahan: I vote for Tweetie as the best Twitted iPhone app
about 27 minutes ago
sellinggiants: I&#39d tell if I had an Iphone. Damn, I want one!
about 27 minutes ago
MikeLizun: played with #twitterfon and #tweetie a lot last few days. Both good for monitoring and tweeting. #tweetie has neat features
about 27 minutes ago
mopcodes: Tweetie (go read iphoneatlas.com)
about 27 minutes ago
Paisano: I love twitterfon on the iPhone. It does it all. All main bu
ttons on main screen. Twitpic too.
about 26 minutes ago
jacktiddy: : I like twitterrific
about 26 minutes ago
phil404: Tried them all and chose Tweetie.
about 26 minutes ago
samhouston: tweetie :)
about 26 minutes ago
clcradio: which Twitter iPhone app do you like best? (any app that also works in any other phone).
about 23 minutes ago
mikefoong: TwitterFon
about 22 minutes ago
RayLevesque: twitterfon
about 21 minutes ago
drewmatich: Tweetie…by a mile
about 19 minutes ago
1000__Monkeys: Twitterific
about 19 minutes ago
sophiasian: twitterfon
about 19 minutes ago
marcumeno: Tweetie
about 17 minutes ago iv>
thecoleorton: twinkle
about 16 minutes ago
sucklevine: twitterfon FTW!
about 16 minutes ago
iTeedee: Twitterfon
about 16 minutes ago
lsherman: tweetie
about 14 minutes ago
bobpatin: tweetie
about 13 minutes ago
tjohansen: Tweetie
about 13 minutes ago
adryenn: So what&#39s the app?
about 10 minutes ago
imaginarydana: twitterfon!
about 8 minutes ago
wjaegel: TwitterFon – just love it :)
about 4 minutes ago
IanDrummond: TwitterFon
-9 seconds ago

New Feedly combines Google Reader, friendfeed, Twitter in great way for social network addicts

Edwin Khodabakchian founder of Feedly yesterday showed me why Feedly is cool (I recorded him telling me about what makes Feedly special and demoing these new features): it combines inputs from Google Reader, friendfeed, twitter, and elsewhere to make an interesting news display, but now it also — as you surf around the web — shows you if there’s a conversation about that blog post on friendfeed. You can read more about Feedly’s new features on its blog.

What is Feedly? It’s an addon to the Firefox browser that aggregates your sharing behavior together into a page and then adds a little bar to the bottom of pages that gives you more sharing and comparing features about that page.

It also is like a little StumbleUpon — if you keep clicking “next” in the little toolbar it’ll take you to another cool site your friends have recommended to you.

This is all crack to someone like me who lives on social networking sites all the time and wants to keep up to date on the conversation that is happening over on friendfeed about items.

But that’s also its downfall. How many people are like me? Not many. Do many people, when they are visiting a web page, wonder what the conversation about that page is? Nah.

And, if you see my Feedly page you’ll see it really is awesome. A good, quick, summary of today’s latest news. I think it’s better than Techmeme or TechFuga because it’s based on my friends and the feeds I’ve subscribed to on Google Reader.

See in Google Reader I have almost 1,000 people who are scouring the Internet for interesting new stuff and are sharing it with me. That is like having 1,000 editors working for you. It makes for a news page that’s quite interesting and amazing.

The problem? How many people have 1,000 friends in Google Reader? Not many.

Two strikes.

That’s why I say Feedly is ahead of its time. At least with friendfeed you can see what someone else’s experience is like, even if you don’t have any friends. I hope Feedly will move in that direction so everyone can see what Louis Gray’s friends are bringing him, for instance.

But, in the meantime, Feedly is very interesting to me and it has been added to my morning news reading.

Read/Write Web has a good article on the new features as well.

Twitter Client War: Twhirl vs. TweetDeck

Last night Loic Le Meur released a new version of Twhirl.

How does it compare to TweetDeck?

“Scoble, you’re using some weird language here.”

Yeah, if you aren’t a Twitter addict you can skip this post.

So, why compare just TweetDeck to Twhirl? Especially when there are dozens of tools to use with Twitter?

Because I listen to the people who I am following and these are the two I see getting discussed all the time. If you want me to review another tool well, get more people to talk about it!

So, anyway, now that we’ve covered my gatekeeping function, why choose one tool over another?

TweetDeck appeals to those who have to watch Twitter all day long. Journalists. Customer support people who’ve been tasked with making sure that everyone on Twitter is happy. And addicts like me.

TweetDeck is a dominant mode app. It takes over your entire screen. I have it running on an old MacBookPro that is toward the end of its life (had the crud beat out of it) and that’s all that machine does: run TweetDeck. It has several columns. The first on my screen shows all my friends that I’m following. The second shows me replies from people who put “@scobleizer” into their Tweets. The third has direct messages that are sent specifically to me. The fourth has a search for “Scoble.” Fifth has a search for “Scobleizer.” Hey, I’m an egotistical baaahhhhssssttttaaarrrrdddd, so sue me. But then the next few columns are things that are interesting to me “Cloud Computing.” “Google.” “TechCrunch.” “Ted.”

You can see how that would be useful for, say, someone who worked at a big company and needed to track everything said about her company, her competitors, and the space her company works in.

I’ve got to admit, I use TweetDeck more often because I like the layout of columns and the fact that it takes over my whole screen.

So, now we come to Twhirl. First, you should know that Twhirl was purchased by Seesmic, which is a video conversation tool. So that’s one thing you’ll notice right away about Twhirl: it’s the best way to do Seesmic videos.

Twhirl also has more features than Tweetdeck. It sends messages to ping.fm, for instance, which will redistribute your Tweets onto other services like friendfeed and facebook.

Lots of people will like the fact that Twhirl looks more like an IM client window and does NOT take over your whole desktop.

So, which one do you like the best?