Social Media

My social media consumption is getting out of hand.

I have identi.ca, friendfeed, twitter and RSS feeds that I monitor throughout the day and respond to when I find something interesting.  Also, I monitor my main gmail account, as well as my job search gmail account, and a yahoo account that’s for throw-away sign-ups.

I’ve said before that I use gwibber to monitor my twitter, friendfeed and identi.ca streams; this was fine when I was just following twitter and identi.ca.  The addition of friendfeed (while welcome, don’t get me wrong) pushes stuff that I might want to see in my other sites down in the window. (FYI: I’m using the alpha build; the daily PPA, not recommended if you need a stable install.  To install in Ubuntu, follow the instructions here.)

I guess the issue I have is that the updates come in fast and furious.  It doesn’t help that I follow Robert Scoble and his brother Alex, and both are very active on friendfeed.  I tried to disconnect from them, but I was actually getting some value-added posts from their feeds.  So, I reconnect to both of them, and get back what I was missing when I disconnected from them.  What I’d like, I guess, is to be able to have different tabs of my different lists for friendfeed.  I doubt this is possible right now, but it’s something handy to have for the future.

On that note, I can hardly wait til Seesmic Desktop rolls out identi.ca and friendfeed support.  This way, I’ll be able to further drill down my consumption to organized lists.

I heard from @segphault that the list feature is on the roadmap for Gwibber 3.0.  Since we’re just hitting the 1.0 release (I think it’s slated for Karmic, forgive me if I’m wrong) I have awhile to wait.

Also, I like to follow a lot of people to get a wide variety of viewpoints.  This adds to the potiential “noise” I have to deal with.  I’ve already removed a lot of the rooms I used to follow (over half), and I did the same with identi.ca.  Like, I’m not using choqoK any more, nor KDE, nor Kubuntu, so I left those rooms.  FSF and Gnu are usually both tagged in posts related to them, so I left FSF. 

I’m just trying to consolidate things so it’s easier to manage.  I did a clean-out of my RSS feeds, removing most of my local RSS feeds, as well as the national news feeds.  I’ve moved all that stuff over to Google News, an awesome online newspaper.  It just aggregates your news (much like an RSS reader) but in a simple-to-scan format, much like a newspaper.  The links are all to the original articles, so just open them up in another tab to read the article.  Easy.

An easy way to cut down on the noise is to shut off the bubble popups for gwibber.  I did that and my desktop is much, much quieter.  I can concentrate on what I’m doing (blogging, reading, etc).

All this monitoring, replying and social following can be a full-time job.  I’m thinking about only letting myself check the sites or my beloved gwibber every hour or so.  Has anyone else tried this?  I know only checking my RSS feeds every so often really cuts down on the “ooooh, I have an unread feed” feeling when I’m online.  Specto helps; I have it set to inform me of new feeds every hour, but I’m thinking of changing it to every 2 hours.

I guess it’s just a case of information overload, and I need to cut down for my sanity.

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