Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Microblogging Revisited

In Chapter 8 of Brian Solis's book Engage, discusses what Brian calls "personal broadcast systems (PBSs)"  or networks that are also known as microblogs and microcommunities among other names. Casual social media users may not recognize what those terms actually mean. When describing PBSs Solis says they are a "unique culture of dialogue organized around short bursts of updates and the responses and corresponding voices and personalities behind them." The keywords here that might spark a light blub is the phrase "short bursts of updates". Did you think of Twitter? If you did, good job! That is most definitely a type of microblog, but while it is probably the most popular, its not the only one. In this post I will be discussing 2 of my favorite lesser known microblogging platforms, Dailybooth and Tumblr.  

One microblog social media site I recently found and love is Dailybooth. Are you into photography? have a camera with you at all times? Heard of the 365 project and always wanted to do it? Dailybooth is just for you.

Dailybooth's tagline is "your life in pictures".  The premise is that you take pictures of yourself, your world, whatever you want and post them. People can comment on your picutres, respond to you about them with a picture of their own, and basically just converse usually through the medium of pictures.  Its similar to Twitter in that you can respond using @username, follow people, and have people follow you. Like Facebook you can Like things and message people. The similarities may make it seem like the same old thing, but don't worry the similarities just make figuring the network out very easy and intuitive, while the focus on photography make is one of a kind.

A few DB users showing their love
If my feelings for Dailybooth can be described as love, then in comparison I have developed an obsession with Tumblr. The way I describe Tumblr to others is as something in between blogger and twitter. You have no character limit so you can type as much as you want but unlike blogs you don't really feel the need to sit down and really write a whole lot. Like dailybooth much of tumblr posts are pictures but you can post so much more.

The picture above is of the top of a tumblr "dashboard." Your dashboard is your home page and those buttons are what you click to post things. As shown by the images you can post a whole slew of things. As with Twitter you can follow people and then reblog (twitter term = retweet) things you like. As with facebook you can also "like" posts. A girl I follow on tumblr, thedisneyhipster, really described tumblr pretty in a recent response to a question. She said" Ok best way I can describe tumblr... If you go on Facebook, it's a bunch of people you know in real life talking about things you don't care about. Tumblr is a bunch of people you don't know talking about things you love!"

I can't even begin to explain all of the awesome things that make up Tumblr. You can tag things, track other tags, queue of posts, ask people questions, and many other things. And those are just the features of the site. Tumblr offers the ability to tap into close knit communities and follow things you love. It can be just a fun pastime or just another way to communicate to publics. An example of connecting can be seen in PR briefs by Caron Sjober which is a blog with PR tips and tidbits. 

Tumblr is a really amazing website and I highly recommend it to everyone. Unfortunately by talking about Tumblr here I am breaking Tumblr rule #1. Oops?



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