Categories
Disliked

Vimeo vs. Gamers

Today, in tech news:

  • Twitter has announced that they are banning all messages (or “tweets”) relating to Apple, due to capacity concerns, given the massive usage spikes during Apple keynotes and product releases.
  • Flickr announced that screenshots and drawn artwork will no longer be allowed for upload, as they do not truly constitute ‘creative expression’ and do not jive with the mission of the site.
  • LiveJournal specified new policy, banning posts about user’s parents. “We simply do not want to spend the money and resources to host these entries,” said management.

To users of these services, all of this probably sounds ridiculous. Sites based around user submitted content would be foolish to restrict content based on topic, media type, or content.

The above headlines are fake, but this one is not: Vimeo is banning videos related to video games.

“The Vimeo staff has decided that we are no longer going to allow gaming videos on Vimeo. Specifically, we are no longer going to allow game walk-throughs, game strategy videos, depictions of player vs player battles, raids, fraps, or any other video gaming videos that simply depict individuals playing a video game. Videos falling into this category will be subject to deletion as of September 1st; new videos of this type will be removed.” – Blake Whitman, Vimeo Staff

Categories
Found

Examining Twinkle for the iPhone

Twinkle - Home

An interesting new iPhone Twitter client appeared within the development community over the weekend. It’s called Twinkle, and while there’s no official homepage for it, there is (naturally) a Twitter account.

The interface is clean, although it’s a little hard to read while you’re walking due to what looks like an 8pt font. But as for why it’s interesting:

Twinkle - Near Me

Twinkle is (through what is undoubtedly some interesting magic) using the iPhone location APIs to geolocate the messages sent through it. It also allows for pictures to be attached.

Curiously, unlike other attempts to add geographic metadata to Twitter, none of this information is stored within the Twitter message. (You can see this on the web version of the message pictured above.) Twinkleking has mentioned that the pictures are being stored on his/her/their web server, and I would assume the geolocation data is being similarly shadowed.

Twinkle - Post

While I’m not crazy about shadow systems like this, Twinkle does work terribly well at what it intends to do – it’s a very natural enhancement to the Twitter experience.

It also gets me thinking that, between this and some of the other technologies people have tried to shoehorn into Twitter, that Twitter itself may want to consider providing some sort of extensibility to their base message model. Being able to add machine-readable metadata to any tweet, much like the machine tags on Flickr, would allow for all sorts of useful enhancements without breaking the core model.

Categories
Debated

Social Network De-evolution

The first social network to rise to any degree of prominence was [Friendster](http://www.friendster.com/). Friendster allows you to punch in a bunch of your interests, link to other friends, pull in your blog posts, share photos, etc.

Then came [Orkut](http://www.orkut.com). Orkut grew quickly because of it’s exclusive “you have to be invited in” rules, but then quickly burned out as everyone went to [MySpace](http://www.myspace.com/). MySpace was – and is – ugly as sin, horribly non-functional, and generally is a contradiction of all that had gone to move the web forward since its inception. This, somehow, made it immensely popular.

Since MySpace has become the unstoppable force in the “this is all of who I am” space, recent social networks have forced you to specialize. Music users can plug in to [lastfm](http://last.fm) or [iLike](http://www.ilike.com]; people looking for business connections can network on [LinkedIn](http://www.linkedin.com/). [Flickr](http://www.flickr.com/) can act as a glorified social network for photographers. And so on.

Meanwhile, activity-based social networks sprang up. [Dodgeball](http://www.dodgeball.com/) broadcasts your location to your friends. [Upcoming](http://www.upcoming.org/) lets you plan events – Evite on steroids.

The many splinter social networks are interesting, because each one limits your scope. I can’t find my friends who aren’t into digital photography on Flickr. I’m not going to link up with people outside of NYC on Dodgeball. Each network becomes more insular, more specialized.

And so now we reach [Twitter](http://www.twitter.com/). Twitter is, as best I can tell, the exact reverse of the original sorts of social networks – your profile is meager, your interests unimportant. Twitter allows you to bomb your friends with updates about what you’re doing in 145 character or less – like Dodgeball, only without the locations. Or neighborhood detection.

I’ve been using it a bit more today after signing up last month – and while Twitterific is a nice client, I’m still trying to get the appeal. It’s certainly an interesting sort of party-line chat that doesn’t require you to be constantly signed in, but there’s something I’m not quite catching. Maybe it’s because after two years on Dodgeball, I know that most people aren’t using the chat functions.

My profiles for all the sites mentioned above: [Friendster](http://www.friendster.com/dandickinson) – [MySpace](http://myspace.com/remydwd) – [last.fm](http://last.fm/user/remydwd) – [iLike](http://ilike.com/user/Dan_D2) – [LinkedIn](http://www.linkedin.com/in/remydwd) � [Flickr](http://flickr.com/people/remydwd) � [Dodgeball](http://www.dodgeball.com/user?uid=16789) � [Upcoming](http://upcoming.org/user/384/) � [Twitter](http://twitter.com/Remy)