Category Archives: microcontent

Delhi bloggers meetup/tweetup

Delhi’s second tweetup/bloggers meet happened on Saturday evening at Incube’s nehru place office and I was one of the speakers. Like last time’s meetup at C.P It was organized by the Delhi bloggers bloc with Priyanka aka Twilight Fairy co-ordinating the event. The last such event I attended was the social media camp/meet that happened a couple of months back in Gurgaon.

It was good to meet friends and people whom I had just known by their online identities. The event was nicely coordinated and managed to attract 30-35 attendees mostly bloggers/microbloggers. The audience was a mix of beginners and intermediary level social media enthusiasts. Gautam Ghosh started the event with a discussion on Twitter & its various uses. It was a free flowing discussion and he nicely touched various aspects of twitter and its tools amongst other things. After Gautam it was my turn to talk about kwippy.

The talk that I gave had two parts, the first being  “WTF is kwippy”. Taking forward some of the points that were discussed in the previous talk I discussed the following
what exactly is kwippy,  how it started as a status message aggregator, how we are handling conversations, people behind kwippy and kwippy’s community.
It took a while for people to get in sync with all that was being said but the demo of the app helped in putting things into context much better and easier. I picked up one of the ongoing conversations on kwippy started by thepete to show a sample conversation and how conversations on kwippy can stay active for days.

Second part of the talk was on how kwippy is different from twitter. On hindsight I should not have made this comparison and got the topic changed because when we talk about conversations there’s nothing common between the two as compared in a previous post here. No offense but I’ve always wondered how come people who’ve been using twitter for long don’t really get what @reply there means. Every time I tell people @ links to that person’s last reply and not the tweet you replied it for, they seem to simply refuse to admit it first and get perplexed. It was good to see people asking all sorts of questions ranging from the technology behind kwippy to the holy grail of social media sites aka monetization.

The next discussion was by Priyanka about copyright issues and her recent experience(not so nice) TOI believes flickr is for flicking and am sure It would have raised some awareness amongst the attendees and maybe left a few wishing for a similar experience to earn some extra buck 🙂

The last topic of the event was on bill of rights by Kumar Rahul. It was another interesting discussion which raised some important questions about user rights on web.

I enjoyed the event throughly and it was worth an hour n a half’s drive from my place.

Thanks Vimoh for the pics 🙂

Conversations, who’s doing what?

“Social Media is people having conversations online” – Marta Z Kagan.

This in my opinion is the most simple yet apt definition of social media that can ever be. Once you start connecting the dots you’ll realize that’s indeed what social media is all about. Be it the latest craze aka microblogging sites, conversational tool/services, social-networking sites or any other media sharing site. While the social objects may differ from service to service the end goal for most is to get people talking/commenting around those objects. Since humans are by nature social and love talking/discussing/debating conversations are the ultimate hooks for a site and if done rightly can do wonders to a site’s engagement.

Wait for a second and think what was your last activity on your favorite site ? Mine was commenting on a comment someone made at a friend’s facebook status. Facebook does a great job in providing these hooks to let people have conversations. It started off with a simple wall, then it was user uploaded images/videos and now its status messages. Comment chains on people’s status messages is getting common by the day. According to me any site that needs to grow and be successful needs to handle conversations extremely well and give it all it takes.

Here’s a brief comparison of how some sites that I’ve used/still use handle conversations.


Each of these features/attributes play an important part in the conversation game. People might not realize it consciously but these features/attributes help in forming hooks that keep people engaged to conversations and in effect increase site’s stickiness.

Threaded Conversations make it extremely easy to keep track of comments/replies around an object.

Parallel Conversations is a purely online experience. Unlike real life with the context switching issue you can online have parallel(almost) conversations with someone or a group on different topics. What it means is that its really difficult offline to have conversations with someone on two-three different topics simultaneously/parallely for long but its far easier online(in some services).

No Character Limit lets people express their views/thoughts without any restriction thus enabling proper discussions/debates.

Follow up Notifications lets people stay in touch with conversations they like which in effect means that people are always connected to a conversation and any activity even weeks/months of inactivity can infuse life again. Conversations are now immortal.

Invite People to a conversation lets people invite other people to begin/join a conversation. It helps in the free flow of conversations across the site and making them VIRAL.

Comment Feed lets you own not only the comments on your objects but also on other people’s objects. You can know take your comments and use them the way you want.

We at kwippy have added a new dimension to the equation by introducing the “Invite people to join/begin a conversation feature” to make the conversation mix more engaging.  How have your experiences been with on-site conversations ? What do you think can make conversations more sticky ?

Lifestreaming is not Micro-blogging !!

Disclaimer: The post that follows is a personal take and is by no means against anyone or anything.

Microblogging has been one of most oft used and abused term in recent times by internet junkies and bloggers alike.

Micro-blogging is a form of blogging that allows users to write brief text updates (usually 140 characters) and publish them, either to be viewed by anyone or by a restricted group which can be chosen by the user. These messages can be submitted by a variety of means, including text messaging, instant messaging, email, MP3 or the web. — wikipedia

Everything is fine till here but the trouble begins when people(including me till a while back) start using the term “microblogging” loosely and confuse it with life streaming, where people send updates about what they are doing and not doing etc to update their friends/followers/fans (referred to as friends going forward). This gets particularly messy when people start using a service to do both microblogging and lifestreaming leaving their friends to do the tedious job of finding relevant bits of information that’ll be useful/relevant for them. Also its difficult for the user and his/her friends to take note and keep track of important matter/content as the chances of it being lost in the huge flow of lifestreaming are pretty high.

The instinct to share details of one’s daily life is a basic/innate one and so is the instinct to be aware of what people that matter to you are upto. Couple this with the ability to easily broadcast/stream your life and you get a viral but not exactly useful combo. Most of the minute details of what one did today won’t be relevant to him/herself leave alone their friends. While I by no means am opposed to the idea of streaming one’s life I am saddened by the fact that there are very few people who understand this and microblog in this sense, and most stream their lives instead.

I would really love to see people start microblogging i.e writing micro posts (100-200) characters about their ideas/feelings/fantasies/stories/philosophy whatever and share it with their friends online with ease using IM’s, browser pluggins, SMS etc. You can do this with the service of your preference, the updates will be less no doubt because tiny updates of life stream like having lunch, watching tv, on phone etc are more frequent but for that moment and many to come these microposts will be more relevant and precious for you and for your friends.

Share a link to your microblog below if you are doing it already or starting now.

The Power of MicroBlogging

Random Tweets on Twitter

Ne1 know of women entrepreneurs who are doing ‘green’ businesses using technology? Or thinking of it? Women 2.0 are looking …….
anyone knows how to search for a string in mysql?…..
is experiencing a foolish moment of optimism…..
The baarat or procession of the groom is 90 mins late. But it is grand!……..

MicroBlogging is the latest rage among geeks, bloggers or rather every netizen(almost)..
Wiki defines MicroBlogging as a form of blogging with 200 character limit. Almost synonymous with Twitter, Jaiku and Pownce MicroBlogging has led to what I’ll call “Blogging Renaissance“. MicroBlogging has brought about a disruptive change in the whole approach to blogging, the shift from
Long posts to Short n Crisp updates,Daily/Weekly posts to Hourly updates, Posting via blogging platforms to Updating from Web, IM, Mobile n more and Posting for the web in general to updating for Friends/Followers/Fans

The content has shifted from “Macro” to “Micro” and it could be just about anything from a piece of news to the current weather, from a favorite quote to a small query about something.Its impromptu content served hot, straight from the pan, as its created.

The special/unique aspect of MicroBlogging is that its not about objects its about people..What are they doing, feeling, thinking and much much more..It’s like “RSS feed for people“. Other interesting aspects are

1) Closer & more Collaborative Networks – because of the personal touch involved and assumption the people hooked to one’s updates are interested to know what’s that person is up to and thus are more willing to collaborate/coordinate .
examples could be answering questions, giving feedback, sharing online resources or better people messaging you back asking how you are doing if you said “not feeling well” .
2) Easier to connect with more new people – given the ease to connect and the fact that unlike blogging your MicroBlogging updates can be about almost anything thus increasing chances for more people having things/interests etc in common.
3) Super Fast and Super Viral medium – given the size of content, time taken to reflect on it and forward is undoubtedly one of d fastest viral medium

There’s something for everyone in MicroBlogging, while for content creators it could be an easy way to stream their lives, for content consumers its an easy way to stay updated, for advertisers(if and once they get into it) it has huge potential in terms of targeted ads based on data mining.In this world of instant gratification MicroBlogging is God sent and as tweeted by a friend I too will wait for the day when if at an eating joint I MicroBlog “anyone else here”, get 10 replies and we all end up having a nice time together

Yes, this post was about MicroBlogging 🙂