The Daily Soulless Aggregation

I think I just invented that term.

If you’re following more than 25 people on twitter, you’ve probably seen several messages like this :

“The daily <whatever> is out. Articles by @ @ @….” with a link to the compilation.

This is a function of a link aggregation tool, which I won’t name because I don’t think the tool is the problem. To summarize, you sign up for this tool and tag articles/tweets that are interesting/related/whatever, and then you send out this link and hope (why, I don’t know) that people follow that link to see the list of aggregated stuff. It shows them the articles in a newspaper-ish format..

Why anyone would click on that link is beyond me.

If you find the article interesting enough to share, why not tell me why you find it interesting, then link to it? I could enter the words “eternal happiness” in Google, and send you those links, but what does that do? I haven’t read (or vetted) them, it’s almost useless.

If someone is “following” you, or reading your blog, or whatever it is you put out, it’s because they’re interested in what YOU say, or your take on what someone else said. Link to the article, and explain WHY you thought it was worthy of sending your readers there.

Without that extra information, you are guilty of Soulless Aggregation – not only are you not adding any value to how people experience you, but you’re basically one step away from that aunt everyone has who forwards those emails that snopes easily disproves to everyone in her inbox.

If you’re that aunt, keep going auntie, if you’re trying to be more, think about it.

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3 Comments

  1. Mark says:

    Actually, I’ve foundat least one of these ‘magazines’ extraordinarily helpful. It’s based on the #cdnpoli hashtag which I follow closely and sti find hard to stay on top of. The magazine makes it easier and more interesting to follow/keep up with.

  2. Mark says:

    Pardon the spelling mistakes in my comment. I rushed it out on my iPhone.

    foundat = found at
    sti = still

  3. Bob says:

    I don’t doubt the value of some of the end-links, that has bound to happen by sheer numbers. But to trust an unvetted tag is a problem.

    I could start tagging stories about shopping cart accidents #cdnpoli (and I just might, hehe)..

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