A Grand Diaspora – The “Conversation” Disappears in the Ether

One of the things that is most missed in the Social Media rush to “join the conversation” is that in many cases, by offering a plethora of places to get our content, we’ve turned the tables.  Our readers who used to find us now expect us to find them.  Even though I write on my blog, I’ll often get the comments for that post on my Facebook page, or via FriendFeed or Twitter, or on some other blog somewhere that quoted from my post.  So instead of my comments coming to me, right alongside my post, I need to schlep out into the great wide web and find them.

Think about where your content appears.  It may start on your blog, then it shows up on a myriad of social media platforms in which you participate, each with their own means of commenting or discussion and even, in some cases, yet another email function.  Let’s face it, in many cases, those commenting functions are ratholes.  You may not even see them for days or weeks, at which point, why would you even bother responding?

Look at the previous post here.  I had a great comment that came in via my Facebook account, but I had to do a cut and paste to pull it into my blog.  How 1998 that functionality is.

How about:

  • If social apps offered a “redirect comments to original publishing platform” option?
  • What if we had a function like a ping back that used xml-rpc to import a comment when it was made on your Facebook, or on another blog.
  • How about if readers thought to try to comment on the original article, instead of the summary?

I love comments, I love forum discussions.  The problem I have is that when you start to spread them out acrross many separate and distinct platforms, their value decreases.  The “conversation” is affectively split and disjointed, and we end up with a grand, yet failed, experiment.

One Reply to “A Grand Diaspora – The “Conversation” Disappears in the Ether”

  1. I like how Posterous blogs allow you to sign in with your Twitter credentials and then cc: your truncated comment to Twitter with a link to the post. I think Disqus does this too and I have seen other blogs with a similar function using the Facebook Connect feature.

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