Giles had a fantastic rant this week that cut to the heart of what’s wrong with all of these “social web application sites”:
People who waste their own time have, in effect, more votes than people who value it – to elevate bad but popular ideas and irretrievably sink independent thinking.
It’s analogous to what’s wrong with the entire massively online roleplaying game genre (eg: World of Warcraft) in that success is a greater factor of the time invested than of skill or talent. Many social web applications add extra features to keep the users interacting with the site, even if this interaction offers dubious value to their lives.
One of the nicest things about the Internet is that if you sit on your ass for long enough, someone will code up whatever little side project you’re thinking about starting. In my case, I was interested in finding out general statistics about Friend Feed as a tape measure of how popular certain social bookmarking sites are. Enter Friend Feed Stats. Thank you, lazyweb.