I’m Doubling Down My Subscriptions Because of FriendFeed Lists

As discussed here before, FriendFeed’s beta version includes the ability to tag users, putting them in different Lists you create. You can create your own programming channels.

I’m loving this feature.

One effect for me has to been to add subscriptions left and right. Why? Two reasons:

  1. Now that I’ve got themed Lists, I want there to be some good content in them! Right now, I’m subscribing to a lot of FriendFeeders who are into Enterprise 2.0 or who have an amazing eye for pictures.
  2. Managing a high flow of content is a lot easier. You can take users out of your Home feed, and tag them into different Lists. Check the Lists at your leisure, and you can see content for many, many more people. It doesn’t all just go flying by you.

Here’s my rendition of how Lists have changed the FriendFeed experience:

How about you? You started your Lists yet?


See this post on FriendFeed: http://friendfeed.com/search?q=%22I%E2%80%99m+Doubling+Down+My+Subscriptions+Because+of+FriendFeed+Lists%22&public=1


The Noise About FriendFeed Noise

I’m actually enjoying the “noise” of FriendFeed. Anyone else?

Corvida, one of my favorite bloggers, has a post up on ReadWriteWeb titled Don’t Be So Naive: Friendfeed Adds to the Noise. In the post, she argues that FriendFeed is contributing to the noise with a lot of stream that hold no interest to her. Her examples include Flickr and Seesmic streams, as well as Twitters without a comment.

Now there is some truth to the noise issue, but I don’t think it rises to a “we’ve GOT to correct this ASAP” level.

In fact, I find the whole thing somewhat confusing. I love seeing the variety of topics and services that cross my FriendFeed page. Heck, I even added the Greasemonkey script to expand the list of items per page to 100 from the current 30. I hated missing stuff by relying only on the 30 items that appear on the first page.

So what am I doing differently from Corvida? Not sure really. Here’s what I know.

Number subscribers. I checked her subscriptions, and I’m subscribed to 55 more people than she is. So seemingly my risk of noise is higher. But it doesn’t bother me.

Blogger bias. I choose my subscriptions carefully. When I’m deciding whether to subscribe to someone, I tend to prefer someone who blogs. That requirement right there is a good one for managing noise. Bloggers seem to have a good level of signal in their FriendFeed streams. If someone only Twitters or shares items on Google Reader, I tend to hold off on subscribing. These rules aren’t ironclad, but they guide me.

Hiding. As I said, I’m not hiding much. I subscribe to one person, whose friends tend to blog in Chinese. I can’t read those, so I’ve been hiding these friends-of-friend on a one-by-one basis. I may need to hide all of his friends. I’m also close to hiding Jason Calacanis tweets as well. His tweets have a low signal-to-noise ratio for me. But it’s only a fraction of what I’m seeing.

See Louis Gray’s post about the various Hide features FriendFeed has – they’ll help clean up any noise issues you have.

Let’s Keep It Simple

Over-engineering a solution to noise is exactly the wrong thing to do. Beware the unintended consequences. The FriendFeed guys have put a lot of power in users’ hands to manage what is seen.

I have suggested a couple possibilities for cleaning up the duplicate links that can show up in FriendFeed. My guess is the FriendFeed guys are working on something related to that. That would be a help.

But really, let the streams flow. Your noise is my signal. I’m enjoying the content and conversations a lot. I even like the multiple times the same link shows up, because I’m piecing together an implicit social network based on that.

Bring the noise!


See this item on FriendFeed: http://friendfeed.com/search?q=%22the+noise+about+friendfeed+noise%22&public=1