If I didn’t have Becky McCray sharing stories she found interesting via her Google Reader account, and if I weren’t connected to Becky so that I could see her shared items, I’d miss stories about how the federal government is doing with its commitment to rural broadband.
That’s a Becky story because it has “rural” in the name, and Becky is the small business champion of the rural world. Having Becky as part of my sharing network means that she’ll find the good stuff that I need to know without me eating up all my cycles reproducing all Becky’s efforts.
When I want financial stories, or fringe stories that will no doubt change the business world, I’m lucky that I have Christopher S. Penn in my stream. I also read shared items by Justin Levy, and Bryce Moore and several hundred other people, on top of the few hundred blogs I’m currently subscribed to overall (I’ve just recently trimmed it down a bit, in favor of sharing).
Sharing Moves Information to Us More Effectively
It might not be efficient (as sometimes, people share things that don’t interest us), but it’s very effective to have many people finding interesting stories instead of doing all the work yourself. It’s an ecosystem, a living reef of information, and it’s up to us to find the good stuff. It’s even nicer when your sharing can shift between systems. Let me explain with a quick drawing:
I share by staring in Google Reader. I hit “Shift S” every time I want to share a story. A few things happen at that point: people who are subscribed to my Shared Items get the story. People connected to me via Google Buzz get the story. People who follow @broganmedia on Twitter get the story. And then other people might move the story along further.
Sharing, as I’ve pointed out, is effective.
Sharing Adds a Value to the Larger Tapestry
I share in other ways. I use Delicious.com to keep track of all the case studies I find interesting. Sometimes, these are just surveys and reports, but then, they’re building blocks for creating case studies.
I do as much sharing publicly as I can, but things that are private or mission sensitive I share via products like Google Wave, so that a much more limited set of people will see. But even then, I try to keep the sharing going, and I keep the sharing in the cloud instead of local to a specific machine.
Put simply, if you’re living in bookmarks, you’re not doing your part. Sharing’s where it’s at. It’s how we’ll find the good stuff.
Ever notice the bottom of every one of my blog posts? Tons of ways to share. It’s part of the game.
See the “Like” button in the comments section? That shares with your Facebook list, as well.
So, how are you sharing? What else are you doing to move things along? Where do you share?