During Mike Masnick’s terrific keynote during mesh, something that grabbed my attention was something he said about Twitter becoming a tool to receive curated content. For example, he’s following someone who’s an expert on copyright, and provides a steady stream of interesting information on stories related to the topic.
Masnick’s take on Twitter resonated with me because it’s exactly where I see the real power of Twitter. While Twitter is certainly great way to connect with people, it’s been a personal online game-changer as a way to access great content that I would have never likely seen.
In many ways, Twitter has become a way to build an effective and interesting team of personal content curators, who comb the Web for interesting, insightful, valuable and entertaining content. Then, my curators deliver this great content in a streamlined package (aka Twitter). In tandem with Techmeme, Hacker News and Filtrbox, I’ve created a small, but effective, set of curation tools.
Twitter’s role as a content curator affects how I use Twitter. It means that adding followers is a methodical process that takes time and effort. Rather than simply following people who follow me, I look at each person, their updates and profiles to see if they’ve got what it takes to join the curation team. I’m looking for people who feature links to content as well as interesting personal insight.
If this approach has any weaknesses, there needs to be a more diversified view of the world. While obviously heavy on technology, I’m looking for some good politics, business and media curators. If you know of anyone who fits the bill, please send them along.
More: You can see Masnick’s keynote on meshTV.