Goodreads vs Twitter: The Benefits of Asymmetric Follow - O'Reilly Radar
I am never more painfully reminded of the limits of symmetric “friend”-based social networks than I am when I post a book review on Goodreads. I love books, and I love spreading the word about ones I enjoy (as well as ones I expected to enjoy, but didn’t quite). Most of the time, my reviews go out quietly to a small group of friends, whose book recommendations I also follow. It’s a lovely social network. But every once in a while, I post a link to one of my reviews on Twitter, and am immediately deluged with friend requests. Some of them are from people I know, but whose taste in books I may not share (or even care about), and many are from complete strangers. If I say “yes” to any of them, I have to see every book they review as well. As you can imagine, it doesn’t scale. I don’t mind if anyone in the world reads my reviews, and they are in fact all public on the site, but for someone to “follow” my reviews (get notified when I write them), they have to be accepted as my friend, in
at O'Reilly Radar — funny... I said this over a year ago... ;-)
Asymmetric follow is why I use Twitter regularly and Facebook much less often. With Twitter’s model, I can find people I’m interested in, whether or not they know me, and learn about them and their lives and thoughts.
"I don’t mind if anyone in the world reads my reviews, and they are in fact all public on the site, but for someone to “follow” my reviews (get notified when I write them), they have to be accepted as my friend, in which case I see all their reviews as well." Asymmetric follow = RSS/Atom, basically. :) this is not a bad thing.
See Kathy Sierra comments @48