link log

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


That social media meme

I've been tagged by Jawbox for the 'social media meme', I have to name my favourite five social networking web services and a reason why I like them. Doctorvee has also been on the case. Here we go then, in alphabetical order only:

1. Bloglines

- I'm relatively new to Bloglines, having previously used only Feedreader (a desktop RSS reader) for my subscriptions. The problem with that though, was that my feeds were confined to the one computer, Bloglines solves this - being a web based reader. A bookmark toolbar button makes subscribing to new feeds or 'subbing' extremely quick and easy. As the name suggests, it's great at tracking your blogs, I'd previously only used RSS feeds for online newspapers (Guardian, Times, BBC) and the like. I'm yet to really delve in to the sharing and searching aspects but it seems there are a lot of options available there which can only add to functionality. The one issue I do have with Bloglines is that it is often slow to update and as such I find myself checking my blogs manually.


- My linklog, blogroll and category system (for what it's worth) are all powered by which would imply that I'm a fan. Rightly so. You can use the features of for all sorts of things and there are countless tools and add-ons you can combine it with. The fact that almost every linklog you'll come across is powered by it should tell you just how efficient an application it is.

3. Flickr

- Once again, I'm quite new to Flickr having signed up only recently. I don't take many photos and as such don't get as much out of Flickr as some but I can see the many benefits clearly.

4. Last.FM

- Like DoctorVee, this is the big one for me. It was always going to be a match made in heaven - I love music, I love statistics and I love to keep tabs on my changing tastes and fads. Plainly, Last.FM and I were meant to be together, merrily holding hands and skipping gaily through fields only stopping to admire newborn lambs. Or something. I just love it. The recent alterations have made things even better and I can now see how my listening trends have altered by year, month, week or almost any combination of variables I can concoct. The radio feature is perfect for the office (although co-workers subjected to endless shoegaze may perhaps feel inclined to disagree) and the recommendation system has led to me to numerous discoveries. I've been introduced to the joys of M83, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and Creedence Clearwater Revival all through Last.FM and my CD collection is far the better for that.

Note: I had heard of the latter two before, I'd just never really listened to their material. So yes. Last.FM is utterly brilliant.

5. YouTube

- I don't submit videos to YouTube or comment on them, I use it purely in an observational way. If I've missed something on television, give it a day or so and there's a chance it might appear, it's also wonderful for finding music videos of bands you might not otherwise see. I tracked down some superb solo acoustic performances of old Ride songs by Mark Gardener - where else could I have found those? Answer - nowhere (no pun intended). I do wonder about the sites long-term future though, the bandwidth requirement must be truly astonishing and the whole venture is a copyright minefield. Still, best to make the most of it while it's still around.

I'm not going to tag anyone for this meme (it's hard finding bloggers yet to have done it already) but if you want to have a go then you have my backing.

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