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Saturday, July 05, 2008

Is Plurk the new Twitter?

It is tough to stay open minded about microblogging when I've been "in love" with twitter for so long.  When twitter turned off the reply tab for days and just wouldn't respond, we were forced to try something else for NECC and after playing with Pownce and others, lots of plurk-ing emerged. (See the plurk page "who likes to plurk?")

So, after setting up ping.fm to update all of this microblogging sites, I'm warming up a little to plurk.

Now, do not expect plurk to be twitter, it is not!

It is a hybrid between twitter and discussion threads -- sort of a microdiscussion thread type of approach.

To see what I mean, take a look at this "plurk page" that was built when I asked for educators who are plurking to share where they are from.  I've done this over and over with twitter and struggled with getting all the information and replies on one page.  It was a struggle and all of the code knocked down my rss feed.

Because some people were public and some private, I couldn't just share my reply tab.  It was quite difficult.

Now, each "plurk" makes its own page and others can respond to a specific "plurk."

The disadvantages are that it takes some getting used to!  I've found that I have to tell it to "view only my plurks" to see the responses -- then, I go to the one page and tab through them that way!

It is very different.  I'm still using both twitter and plurk although plurk has some cool things going on.  It looks like to me in twitter that many are at least trying out plurk.

I hate to say that twitter has been its own worst enemy in this entire thing.  Their unreliability and unresponsiveness (spurred by their growth) has pushed people to try other things.

Twitter needs to:
  • Keep their service reliable and scalable (sounds easier than it is!)
  • Make threaded replies possible (this really is an advantage)
  • Make it easier to look at fans who aren't following to add them as friends more easily.

Plurk needs to:
  • Give another way for us to update via mobile b/c many of us don't have smart phones.
  • Figure an easier way for us to read the replies. I'm struggling with this.
  • Changing fans to friends HAS GOT TO BE EASIER!!!
  • I hate the "karma" thing.  I really do.  Guess some like the extrensic motivation to use their service but I don't.  Wish I could turn it off.

I don't think Plurk is the new Twitter.... yet.  But who knows? What do you think?

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