Tag Archives: fun

An algo for Twitter Authority

This post from Loic Le Meur has sparked a lot of debate that Twitter should have a “search by authority” feature. Keeping the ego factors involved aside “search by authority” could indeed be useful for finding out what people who matter are saying about a particular topic. This will be particularly useful when finding what thought leaders are saying about a particular thing/topic and getting selected and relevant information during crisis times amongst others.

As mentioned here, follower count isn’t the right metric to gauge authority and while twitter ratio(followers/following) could be a better indicator of a one’s celebrity status doesn’t imply authority. Though there is almost zero possibility of Twitter implementing this but just for fun lets see what could possibly be a nice algo to determine one’s authority on Twitter.

1) Re-Tweet Ratio(RTR): RTR = Total number of re-tweets/Total number of tweets. A high Re-Tweet ratio can imply great content, large following and thus high authority. Going a step further if instead of posting something original, you re-tweeted someone’s content which one of your followers further re-tweeted then its credit should be added to the original posters authority and not the middle man i.e your authority will ony include re-tweets for your original content.

2) Tweet Favorite Ratio(TFR): TFR = Total number of favorites one’s tweets got/Total number of tweets. A high Tweet Favorite Ratio is another indicator of great content, large following and thus high authority. Since unlike kwippy where favoriting(and commenting) stats are out in open

, twitter isn’t open about favoriting information and you not even know if someone liked your tweet or favorited it.

3) Tweet Reply Ratio(TRR): TRR = Total replies one got/Total number of tweets . A high Tweet Reply Ratio might not be that clear an indicator about great content or large following it definitely indicates a high level of engagement which in turn can loosely be linked to one’s authority. For ex: this tweet by Chris Brogan
sent two days back got hundreds of replies and still continues to get replies.

4) Tweet Link Backs Ratio(TLBR): The most far fetched and away from reality measure could be TLBR. TLBR = Total number of link backs one’s tweets got/Total number of tweets. Though a link backs for one’s tweets aren’t tracked, if done we could include this data to calculate TLBR. A lot many times people’s tweet inspire blog posts and discussions on various aggregators. A high TLBR can also serve as a indicator about one’s authority.

Now we have atleast four parameters which we can use to calculate one’s twitter authority. If there’s a formula for calculating twitter authority it might look like this

Twitter Authority = 2 * RTR + TFR + TLBR + 1/2*TRT

Since Twitter Re-Tweet ratio is the highest measure of great excellent it’s given most weightage. Twitter Favorite Ratio comes next and is almost same as relevant as Twitter Link Back Ratio they have equal weightage. Twitter Reply Ratio, doesn’t imply great content necessarily but a tightly knit follower base it gets the least weightage.

Its was a fun post written just like that and shouldn’t be taken too seriously but if you did, tell me what you think about it ?

Of Virtual Gifts and Real Money

If you are one of those who always thought gifts can(and should) always be tangible, think again.

Few facts:
1) People spend over $1.5 billion on virtual items every year. Pets, coins, avatars, and bling.
2) The virtual goods market is expected to exceed $7 Billion in less than 18 months.
3) Facebook’s digital goods business has appeared to double to between $30-40 million/year at the current rate.
4) Second life raises $80M annually from virtual goods.

While a lot has been said about the business aspect of Virtual Gifts, what makes virtual gifts a phenomenon remains a mystery for most. Virtual Gifts might sound a bit weird for some but there’s a lot more to virtual gifts than 1’s and 0’s. Here’s what I feel make Virtual Gifts tick.

1) The Gesture: This according to me one of the most important/human aspects of virtual gifts. One might not be able to eat a virtual cake or smell virtual flowers but the fact that someone took their time, effort and maybe money to gift something has an inherent feel good factor for both the sender and receiver.
2) The Trophy Effect: Flaunting gifts, is almost as common as gifts themselves. The act of giving a virtual gift and receiving one can be flaunted and ego’s(of people involved) massaged. Be it one’s profile page or activity news feed, if implemented well in a platform it can be another reason to share virtual gifts.
3) A virtual gift is better than no gift: You might have hundreds of real life friends and family members but not everyone will buy you a cake or send you flowers but if given an option(with low price) people might choose to share online gifts instead of not sending any gift at all.
4) Fun: You and I might not agree but there’s a fun angle involved with virtual gifts, in a sense that you can have unusual, exotic and virtually relevant( hours for an online game etc) gifts which might not be possible in real life.

Though the virtual gifts market is growing at a good pace what  needs to be seen is what all types of virtual gifts get added to the mix going forward, how can they be interlinked with points or real money and how business models evolve over them. A barter system could also be interesting and so would a resale and sale back of virtual goods for real money. What do you think ?