Monday, 5 October 2009

Smallrivers [Sponsored Post]

I’m not going to lie on this, I have been asked to express my opinion on a new networking idea called New Rivers. That's not to say I have become a corporate fat-cat in the pocket of “The Man”. The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone.

If you are like me you blog away tirelessly, mainly for the joy of the medium. Its nice to spout and even nicer to think that occasionally someone will connect with your content. They may find it banging, or wicked but most of all you hope they will find it useful. Then you hit the problem, how do you get like minded people to read it? Blog aggregators will index it but the chances of a random person stumbling over it is low. You could Submit it to Stumbleupon or Digg but really that's like shouting in a room filled with people likewise shouting and most of them don't really care about your niche collection of 1980s He-Man memorabilia. The old internets way of linking like minded persons was via a web-ring but this is clunky and there can be hundreds of rings for one subject. Wouldn’t the ability to add a link to a a huge collection of websites that suit your content be a great idea?

That's what SmallRivers attempts to do. If you look at my sidebar you will see that my site in general has a SmallRivers button (here it is). When you host this on your site it gives your readers the chance to see just what other associated content would be right up their alley. Click it now. The sidebar is intended to be unobtrusive and shows exactly where and what is linking to and from your site. You can join any existing river and paste your own icon or even create your own, allowing a spiderweb of interconnecting content throughout the web. If you like my site, join my River. Peace love and Harmony reign.

You can also add a button to specific posts. Made an insightful and pithy comment on the world of amphibious mammals? Why not connect into the Amphibious Mammals river. In this case the pithy article is about SmallRivers so here is their own connection if you click on that one you will see it connects to a totally different River which is also dynamic just like mine, and updates as new sites connect and grow.

This all sounds a bit too good right? Well as I said this is my opinion and here are what I see as the pros and cons of this network.

Pros:

  • The system is deceptively simple and neat with a very nice sidebar serving associated content.
  • The website is also well thought out an uses the OpenID standard which means that you are able to avoid lots of tedious forms.
  • You are not reliant on a backbone like Stumbleupon or Digg as al connections are produced by persons actually interested in linking into you.
  • Its free! (always a big plus)
  • Its far more directed then the current blunt instruments used to promote blogs and sites
  • It will augment your blog bringing in audiences that previously may have been unaware of its very existence.

Cons:

  • At the moment the user base is tiny. Such a far reaching network needs size.
  • The website is also very Spartan. I would love to be able to browse existing rivers and find content.
  • Success could breed cost
  • There seems to be no way (that i could find) of reaching existing Rivers, something that I would deem absolutely essential. I don't want my own i want to join an existing one!

I would love SmallRivers to work and if it takes on could be a fantastic leap in navigating the massively bloated web. Of course should uptake not happen then it will founder and die like a Pelican on an Oil Soaked beach. Personally I an hoping for the success. Take a look. Its free!

Paul out.

Sponsored post

 

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