Before you get back to work on Monday (or for some reading before you get down to working), there have been a few interesting and thought-provoking posts I’ve spotted:
Robert Scoble posted 10 reasons why Twitter direct messages suck, which I expected to disagree with, but he made a lot of sense in explaining why the amount of messages he receives means that he realistically has to ignore them – he can’t autorespond, file, filter, or mass delete, so it becomes unworkable.
Stowe Boyd then takes it and runs further, to outline how the problem could result in an opportunity to earn some revenue for Twitter, around improving the integration and functionality of direct messaging for those willing to pay $5 a month.
My thought is that it’s a very small group who need these features as an absolute necessity, but a larger number might be persuaded they need them. It’s certainly something I could see Twitter exploring, and I suspect that by offering it as a Freemium service, they could avoid some of the ‘sell-out’ accusations that display advertising will generate.
I’m not sure it’s enough to please the VCs and justify the valuation of Twitter – but I’m increasingly convinced that there isn’t a sole revenue stream that provides a complete solution – and it could be a mixture which becomes the answer.
The other thought piece I thought was worth repeating was Dave Winer on The Space Between Twitter and FriendFeed. Is there room for something that exists with a more graphic and visual system than Twitter, but without some of the complexity of Friendfeed which can put users off?
Obviously this wasn’t Pownce. But could it be a direction for Plurk, which already has a far more visual interface? Or one of the services I have to admit to overlooking a little in the influx of clones, copies and variations, such as Rejaw? And would it be enough to achieve the most important and challenging part of taking on Twitter – getting critical mass? Friendfeed is different enough to fulfill a slightly different function and have an identity away from microblogging, but would something in the Friendfeed/Twitter chasm be cursed by being too much of one or the other?