Increasingly, social media web sites are becoming much more than places to keep in touch with friends, family and colleagues online. They’re becoming major hubs of information consumption, analysis and distribution as well, so it’s important to understand how this trend is playing out on some of the more popular destinations on the social web.
I’m definately guilty of using Friendfeed as an RSS aggregator – I never actually visit the site, but it serves as a useful gateway to distribute information across other networks.
For example, Friendfeed allows me to aggregate feeds from Google Reader articels that I’ve “shared”. I’ve instructed Friendfeed to post any of these Google Reader shared items to Twitter. Why? Because I wanted a quick and easy way to share articles on Twitter from my desktop and iPhone. Clicking the “share” button is the simplest method and Friendfeed takes care of the rest.
I do not expect to ever leverage Twitter or Facebook as an RSS aggregator, since I’m actively building relationships with people there. At some point there is a risk of overwhelming your readers with either too much information or stuff that’s really just not interesting to them. In that sense, it’s about balance. Of course, some business have found this useful depending on the type and frequency of information flowing through their RSS network pipeline.