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Blipfoto Twitter Branch

‘Curation has become the next big challenge’ - Blipfoto founder Joe Tree on Twitter co-founders' new websites Medium and Branch


By Stephen Lepitak | -

August 16, 2012 | 3 min read

With the news that Twitter co-founders Ev Williams and Biz Stone have created two new websites one which aims to allow users to publish their own photography and writing to share with other users (Medium) and another that will extend the conversations of Twitter users, literally allowing them to converse through more than 140 characters (Branch), Blipfoto founder Joe Tree has told The Drum that curation is the next challenge online.

Blipfoto, the online daily photo journal, which has users in over 170 countries and receives over 17 million monthly views, with over 2 million pictures having been uploaded, allows users to post just one photo a day to their journals.

In respond to Tree’s reaction to the newly launched sites, he said; "Now that billions of us are telling the internet what we're thinking, feeling, doing, watching, eating and reading, curation has become the next big challenge. Unless you're ruthless about un-following, de- friending and managing your social connections, how do you stop the best or most relevant pieces of content getting lost? And as ads begin peppering our newsfeeds and timelines, what's going to happen to the level of engagement?

"This is why more tools like Storify and Pinterest (my copyright concerns notwithstanding) are beginning to emerge, which help people collect disjoined fragments of content, build them into new stories or collections, and re-share them.

"Others take the same approach as Blipfoto, where the quality is kept high and the noise low by forcing users to self-curate through simple restrictions on the amount or type of content that can be shared.”

Tree added: "Twitter, with its 140 character limit, has this same principle at its core. So it's intriguing to see the brains behind it launch two new offerings - one which strips away both the character limit and openness, another which encourages us to collect things within a theme. Crucially, both rely on the audience as a whole helping the best stuff rise to the top (or perhaps more crucially, the crap sink to the bottom).

"We'd be easily fooled into thinking social media's all sewn up by three or four giant corporations. But the reality - as highlighted by a founder of one of those corporations in his intro to Medium - is this is all unchartered ground, there still are a lot of problems to solve and a hell of a lot of land to be grabbed."

Medium is currently online open to users through invites, but is expected to be available to widescale user in the near future.

Blipfoto Twitter Branch

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