Victus Spiritus

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The Social Web Influences Content

15 Apr 2010

Vader and Robert Scoble Hanging at Industrial Light and Magic

The Gravity of Social Topics

Like many "new bloggers"* I receive a majority of visitors from social web locations. Social sharing sites like Twitter, HackerNews, and comments^ are my dominant referral sites, comprising a large fraction of this blogs monthly traffic. What this means is that 80-90% of readers here are familiar with social media and feel comfortable sharing these posts with their friends and commenting (engagement/resonance). This causes social web topics to dominate in page views and virality (retweets, likes) not just for Victus Spiritus, but for many new bloggers. Social web users (the social web is read/write) are self selecting content that falls into known categories and grooves that are familiar.

The most common talked about topic on Twitter is Twitter. It's like the Pikachu characters that screech their own name to self identify (and nothing else). The other dominant topics are celebrities, major events, and daily habits. At some point social media networks grow up, as user bases stabilize and either enable connectivity on varied interests or die out. The Ouroborus can grow only so large by eating it's own tail.

But within networks that survive maturation is where the magic happens. This rich topical engagement is already brewing within Twitter and Facebook to varying degrees, you just need to spend some time looking for the right communities. The social web is an incredible source of serendipitous search. Just from my daily visits to AVC (Fred Wilson's blog) I generally pick up a few links to well matched sources of information or new tools. Whether it's a new startup or an excellent media juggling tool, I'm rarely dissappointed. Each tool has a founder's story behind it, making it much more compelling. The struggle to independently create valuable tools resonates with my own creative urges.

Content Influences the Social Web

Addictive hit songs and movies or video series can instantly spread throughout the web to niche communities. The long tails of human interest gravitate towards the highest quality or most interesting media, which flows back to larger but broader attention groups.

A great blog post or interview can spin off many thousands of side discussions to dissect every nuance of a topic. It is through our collective and critical examination that we discover truth.

Games are something to talk about, and share experiences within so they are an incredibly popular and successful extension of social media. Folks can bond over the latest hit social game and discuss strategies or multiplayer experiences. Game behavior can also improve the quality and culture of virtual social locations. The future of web sites and mobile platforms are those that we bring with us. This blog travels 10-12 miles with me each morning as I write it while walking.

Giant Chickens Have Nothing to do with this Topic but are Infectiously Fun, thanks Eli

A Chocobo Song:

Notes:
* I've blogged a little over a year and ~390 posts.

^ one of my "guerilla marketing" tactics to find my blog's community is to comment on related blog posts I'm interested in a few thousand times a year. I have a dozen or two favorite blogs I frequent but make sure to visit and say hello to a few new bloggers a week