Disclosure: I am personally not a Triberr participant.
Earlier this week, changes were made to how Triberr has decided to operate in the future. These changes will affect some (high profile) Twitter users no doubt. The bizarre thing is that no one was talking about this major change and its repercussions. An odd occurrence considering how quickly polarizing and popular topics can spread like wildfire on Twitter. And Triberr has no shortage of controversy on either side of the pro/con debate of its inherent value.
According to Triberr’s description, its raison d’etre is simple: to distribute and promote blog posts to members of a Tribe, who in turn retweet and promote fellow Tribe members’ content to their networks. It acts a multiplier essentially catapulting one’s reach into the stratosphere if one is a member of a Tribe with very influential Tweeps who count large numbers of followers.
From the Triberr website:
Every time you publish a new post, everyone in your tribe will tweet it to their followers. And you do the same for everyone in your tribe.
This happens automagicly of course. Hands off kind of deal. Leaves more time for true engagement.
The only problem? Many people’s feeds have been plugged up with these tweets and retweets and this leaves me questioning the true levels of engagement and accountability within the Tribe participants. For example, how many Triberrs are actually reading the posts they are retweeting and how many are actually using that “extra” time for real engagement while sending out automated tweets? This is where it got sticky this week.
Twitter’s TOS are fuzzy when it comes to the definition of spam. But what Triberr does has been characterized as spam by some. The fact that Triberr basically survives (nay, even thrives) on automatic Tweeting is enough for tweeps to set up camps on the pro and con sides. But on November 1 this all changed–-Triberr abandoned automatic tweeting. Surprisingly, despite the raging discussions Triberr has generated in the past, silence followed this little move that has big implications. As Eric Wittlake brought to my attention: No one is talking about the change and Triberr’s detractors are not even aware of it.
Triberr is a polarizing platform and automatic tweeting is Triberr’s lightning rod feature. Proponents applaud the easy exposure and traffic, detractors point to lower quality content being broadly shared and higher sharing volume.
So how will Triberr survive and even thrive when one of its best and shiny features that greatly decreases its benefits has been removed? What can Triberr do to maintain its user base, encourage sharing, and promote organic discussion and blog post dissemination?
- Bring In New Blood. According to Dan Cristo and Dino Dogan, they are unveiling some great features that will add value for their users. There will be new and creative ways for Triberrs to leverage these changes to get more eyes on their blogs and gain new readers. But what also needs to happen here is an influx of new, dynamic (maybe even niche) bloggers who will add new perspectives to offside topics.
- Kick It Up A Notch. One of the most anticipated features will be the multi-platform sharing options. Incorporating Google Plus, StumbleUpon, and Facebook (yes!) will hugely affect site traffic for bloggers and could really drive writer/audience interaction to new levels.
- Congratulations! It’s a Blog! Personally, I would like to see Triberr give birth to community/group blogs specific to each tribe where each tribe member can guest post. It would be like a Mother Ship where each individual tribe member could group post, collaborate, and encourage discussion/discourse. Triberr’s proposed Dynamic Tribes could be their answer for this. We’ll have to wait and see.
I do have to say I will be happy to NOT see any more posts at 2 or 3 AM (yes, I am up that late; or is that considered early?) that are clearly automated and meant to drive traffic to a blog/website and clearly not optimized for actual engagement. I’m hopeful this new and improved Triberr will be more focused on keeping it real.
Special thanks to Eric Wittlake for our discussion on Triberr and his blog post featuring his take on the Triberr changes.
Are you a member of Triberr? Why or why not? What’s your experience been with Triberr? How do you greet these changes in how Triberr will operate?