INF506: OLJ Task 5 – Social News Site Review – Reddit

Reddit is an interesting social media sites compared to the more linear approaches of Instagram and Snapchat. However, when compared to Facebook and Twitter who tailor your feed to show you the “top” content, Reddit’s approach makes a lot more sense. The way that Reddit allows users to up/down vote content is reflected in the content scores and any comment on a topic is similarly voted up or down depending on the whim of other users. Reddit’s clear display of this scoring system makes it more transparent than other social media algorithms.

Reddit allows users to expand their reading interests and find articles of interest by allowing you to subscribe to ‘sub-Reddits’ that relate to the user’s topics of interest. Within those sub-Reddits users normally post links to articles or other content with a reason for the post. This can allow a user to quickly explore lots of content. Depending on the number of contributors of content then there is a great opportunity for you to discover new articles. The downside that there is often a lack of moderation within sub-reddits and it takes a little time to understand how the platform works and what is/is not worth looking at.

Compared to Feedly, a site that I use to keep up with my personal learning network (see my write up here) which is often a self-curated list of articles to read from certain key trusted sources, Reddit puts the user out of their comfort zone potentially exposing the user to a lot of junk content but similarly taking the user out of their filter bubble and engaging with a more raw version of the web that could prompt a user to come up with new ideas. However, this rawness means that it should only be one source of articles and reading as there is only so much free time in the day to wade through mixed content and sometimes you just need to find and read information from trusted sources.


INF506: OLJ Task 4 – Reviewing @nlagovau

The library tweets about events and exhibitions at the National Library. The account is used to reveal “behind the scenes” details that otherwise wouldn’t be available to the public. In one tweet a curator of the Cook exhibition gives a explanation of where a number of the exhibits have come from and why they are important.

They use #OnThisDay to tweet about important events in Australian history that are of relevance to the library such as commemorating the passing of Norman Lindsay.

The account generally retweets posts where someone is discussing a positive experience at the library, or a photo of the library or library event. There is a lovely retweet of someone who was really happy yo get her library card, this approach makes reading the libraries twitter feed uplifting.

There are retweets of historical information from likeminded accounts such as “Sydney Then and Now” showing the construction of the Harbour Bridge.

It appears that the goal of the Twitter account is to engage the public by creating lots of operational content on a regular basis. This is reflected in the library having over 41 thousand followers. A more strategic or politically motivated account would have a lot fewer followers and would not make reference to politically charged decisions such as celebrating a year since the referendum on same-sex marriage.