Here’s the thing. I’ve been on Triberr for a few months now, and I have to confess that I’m can’t seem to find the love.
On the face of it, Triberr sounds like a terrific idea. Just look at the menu of benefits it (theoretically) offers:
- A gathering place for the “little bloggers” (as Triberr’s developers call us) to band together in cozy, bonfire-warmed tribes to tweet the bejesus out of one another’s posts;
- One handy-dandy repository of links to share with the Twitterverse;
- Mega-tweetage by our tribemates of our every bloggy thought in volumes hitherto unimagined;
- Vast legions of visitors dropping by to bestow comments and a follow.
Really, what could be more fabulous?
Except, in my experience, the reality isn’t all that fabulous. In fact, in my experience–and I do acknowledge that yours may be very different–Triberr has become as much of a pollutant in the Twitter waters as, say, auto-DMs and auto-#FFs and auto-thanks-for-the-follows. I am so very much not a fan of auto-anything in social media. When we start automating our interactions, I think we pretty much override the whole “social” component of “social media” and step straight into botland.
I don’t know about your Twitter stream, but in the aftermath of our collective leap onto the the Triberr bandwagon, my stream has devolved into a great spammy wonderland of people “recommending” blog posts that they’ve probably never read to people who are highly unlikely to read them and providing precisely zero context for that recommendation.
Maybe it’s the cynic in me, I don’t know, but I suspect that many (if not most) people are approving and sharing many (if not most) of their tribemates’ blog posts out of a feeling of obligation and reciprocity rather than out of a burning desire to share something they’ve read and found informative, fascinating or inspiring.
I tried to come to terms with the bot-ness of my own Triberr tweets by visiting every blog I was promoting via Triberr. And commenting. Because, really, isn’t that supposed to be one of the reasons we’re using Triberr? To support one another’s blogs? Instead of just clicking the smart little “approve” button, I opted to click on the “share” button instead and to personalize my tweets to make it clear that I had read the post in question–and I stripped every tweet of that tell-tale “…via @randomtribemember” in the hopes that someone would actually follow the link.
That didn’t last for long. Too many blogs, too little time. I opted instead for only sharing about half the posts in my Triberr stream–the ones I had time to read, comment on, personalize in a tweet. The rest I ignored, or just winced and clicked the “Approve” button to share, even though I had no idea whether they were amazing or utterly banal.
But, you know what? I just can’t make myself do that anymore. I’m starting to feel like a spammer. I am a spammer. I’ve become part of the auto-occupation that’s stripping the “social” from social media and bogging Twitter down with a relentless, unending onslaught of tedious, impersonal, spam-o-rific linkiness.
And so I quit. As of the end of the week, I’ll be resigning from my tribes, turning in my bones and making my escape. I’m going back to old-school tweeting: having conversations and tweeting links to the blog posts I’ve read with a hint or two about why I think you might like to read them too.
So, how is your Triberr journey working out for you? Still loving the tribes? Or do you share some of the same (or different) concerns?