You Control the Social Firehose / by Chel Wolverton

After following this discussion on Google+ about the evolution of social network adoption and a number of other posts regarding excitement for a chance to cut down on the noise/shares/etc,  I find I must point out something fairly obvious. Filtering social networks is YOUR responsibility.

In 2007, FriendFeed was the shiny new tool at the moment.  A lot of folks went to great lengths to add every other social network they were a part of.  Including Twitter.  The redundancy was incredibly annoying.  I decided it wasn't the best use of my time to read the same content twice (especially breakfast updates!) and promptly stopped listening to FriendFeed.

If you find that are feeling overwhelmed with the information firehose and aren't sure where to start cutting the flow, here's a hint.  My friend, client and a mentor, Howard Rheingold has a series of short videos to help with "retooling the way you pay attention" and creating an intelligence dashboard that helps filter streams so the important information finds its way through.

When you create a dashboard, it will not only help focus your attention, but it will also keep you up to date on the important things that happen in your industry.  Things that can change the game for your company if you're listening the right way.  Until you organize and manage the data, it's just data and noise.

Hearing users talking on Google+ about finally having a chance to "do it right" strikes me as saying that the control is out of the users hands.  It isn't up to Facebook, Twitter or Google+ to keep the filters at an appropriate level.  It's up to you.  Can the companies add features to help?  Sure.  But the responsibility was always yours.

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