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The end of Pownce -- or the beginning of microblogging?
Blog service SixApart has bought Pownce -- and will shut it down. Twitter came this close to being swallowed by Facebook. So why do I think this is the beginning of microblogging?
I know my Twitterholic friends are laughing in scorn at this headline saying, "Nail has really lost it now. Where has he been? Twitter is the biggest thing since instant messaging!" My point exactly: how many instant messaging services are stand alone businesses?
As a proud Twitter-resister, here's my answer: microblogging is a feature, not a service.
Every social network has the "what are you doing now?" feature. What they don't have is the easy updating and subscription features of Twitter. But how hard are those to add? And now how long will it be before Typepad, Moveable Type, et. al. add microblogging to their blogging platforms? (Sure SixApart is shutting Pownce down but you don't think they're keeping Leah and crew just because they now have empty desks from their other layoffs?)
Hook all this up to FriendFeed and would you really miss Twitter? In fact, with more microblogging services available through the blog and social network platforms that have far more than Twitter's 6 million users, won't that be the true beginning of microblogging?
Maybe Catharine Taylor's campaign to find a business model for Twitter will surprise me with a way to make it a viable business. I can't wait to see what people come up with.
But if it doesn't have revenue to support itself, it will be a valuable asset to one of the social network, blog platform, or mobile phone companies.
And then microblogging will really take off.
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I think it's interesting in and of itself that we all had multiple networking sites. Personally, Twitter is on the lower end of my social networking hierarchy, but it's still on the list.
I'd be interested to know if people actually do "tweet" with the exact same networks from facebook or linkedin or myspace or what have you.
Though there are most likely overlaps between each network - is there a particular hierarchies of social relationships?
Are the people you follow on twitter necessarily your friends on all other sites or any other sites? Perhaps each social networking site separates new friends from old friends, college friends from work friends, colleagues from family...
Posted by: Jessica | Dec 3, 2008 1:58:02 PM
Thanks for the comments.
Ok, maybe the FriendFeed comment is a bit naive. And, yes, Twitter is a social network, not just microblogging.
My bigger point is that we all have (multiple) social networks already on Facebook, LinkedIn, PlaxoPulse, Ning, whatever. Does it really make sense tohave a totally separate Twitter social network? Don't most people want to share "tweets" with their existing social networks? These networks have part of the functionality of Twitter already and with a bit of effort they can build out the rest. Someday it will happen, and I have to believe it will be sooner rather than later.
Granted, Twitterholics will probably continue to think I'm naive. I guess on this one I'm more of a mainstreamer than an bleeding edger!
Posted by: Cymfony | Dec 3, 2008 12:06:43 PM
"Hook all this up to FriendFeed and would you really miss Twitter?"
Excellent. The 'Friendfeed will kill Twitter' claims had almost died out.
Posted by: mack collier | Dec 2, 2008 9:22:04 PM
Facebook already has microblogging like functionality. And no adding the feature set to FriendFeed does not replace Twitter, they already have the capability.
Yes microblogging is a feature. But Twitter is not microblogging. Twitter is a social network.
I understand what your saying but as a self proclaimed Twitter-resister you really do come off as naive here.
It's like nuns telling people they don't need to have sex. You don't get it, till you get it.
Posted by: Tac Anderson | Dec 2, 2008 9:21:12 PM
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