StockTwits, NHL TweetMixx Exemplify Future of Online Content, Social Media
Several years ago, I thought that the future of online content would be led by Netscape (which later “spun” off to become Propeller), which innovated by using a mixture of user submitted content and curated content with an element of community-controlled voting or ranking. As we get close to 2010, things are basically playing out as I predicted, though of course with some very interesting differences and details.
While destination “social news” sites like Digg are still popular, “content tracking” is proving to be the current rage. What I mean by that is applications such as the TweetMeme “retweet” and Facebook “share” buttons that are popping up on many blogs, which allow people to easily post web pages and stories that they like on their social media profiles.
There’s benefit to the user in being able to express themselves through their content browsing habits and the ability to share content with friends and colleagues, and there’s benefit to publishers who help to push content “virally.”
What particularly interests me today is how content aggregation, social media, and content tracking applications are all intermingling around specific topics and content experiences. In my view this is the future of online content and social media because, when done right, it provides specific audiences with high value and relevant content and tools.
Browsing the webs today I noticed two great examples of this.
The first is StockTwits, which aims to serve “Real Investors. Real Ideas. Real Time.,” received an additional $3 million in funding. I’ve been following StockTwits for a while, mostly through Howard Lindzon’s blog, and think that it’s doing really cool things in bringing real time stock news and chatter to the tuned in financial community. TechCrunch notes: “Traders are clearly enamored with the product and love the constant stream of company/sector specific data.” My belief is that in the future this kind of product will expand beyond Twitter (which is of course a massive ecosystem in of itself these days) to include a spectrum of mainstream media news, blog posts, and “user generated” chatter from across the social web.
* A “Chatter” tab that keeps track of what NHL fans are
* A “Links” tab with the most up-to-date links that match your list of
* Unwrapped, abbreviated links with text, video and photos, so you
don’t have to navigate away from the NHL Tweetmixx channel
* A widget that makes it easy to share the NHL TweetMixx Channel with
other websites, your Facebook page (coming soon), MySpace page, blogs
and more! You can pick up the widget right off the NHL TweetMixx
channel. Its a must-have for any hockey blog.
While the initial implementation is a little bit clunky looking, this is a perfect example of how a specific community (rabid hockey fans) can obtain topic-specific news, links, rich media, and chatter related to their favorite sport.
While there are many other examples of cool content aggregation/social media that are pointing the way forward, I really believe that this is just the beginning of the beginning. I for one will be staying tuned!