Will FriendFeed Become a New Source for Fast Quotes for Bloggers and Journalists?

Learning from Flickr's Co-founders on Their Way Out of Yahoo – ReadWriteWeb Marshall Kirkpatrick has an insightful post over at ReadWriteWeb about yesterday’s big news in the photo sharing world, Flickr co-founders Stewart Butterield and Caterina Fake’s resignation from Yahoo!

Marshall talks about some of the initial glory that Yahoo! derived from acquiring Flickr and some of the lessons to be learned from Flickr’s success.

Marshall’s story is well written and spot on, but the more interesting story to me about Marshall’s piece is how he wrote it. Interestingly enough, Marshall turned to FriendFeed as a source to get quotes and comments (myself included) for his article. Because of the dynamic, almost instantaneous nature of FriendFeed, Marshall was able to quickly poll a number of different blogger/pundits and use their FriendFeed comments as quotes for his story. In addition to me, he also quotes Scoble and Winer. Varun Mahajan commented on Marshall’s post, “I see, where blogging is heading. You are in essence asking for blog pre-comments.”

Robert Scoble was also on FriendFeed earlier today announcing that he’s been able to schedule some interview time with U.S. Speaker of the House Nanci Pelosi in his upcoming trip to Washington DC. Immediately Scoble turned to FriendFeed and started getting a lot of feedback about the types of questions he should ask her.

It makes me wonder if this sort of use won’t become more widespread in the future. Already a few of the top mainstream print media reporters are building a presence on FriendFeed. Chris Nuttal who writes for the Financial Times as well as Jessica Guynn who writes for the Los Angeles Times both are active on the site. BBC Technology Editor Darren Waters also has an account on the site.

As I was writing this post live, I polled FriendFeed myself asking for who some of the other reporters and technology pundits on FriendFeed were. Louis Gray promptly responded back with a list of some of the top bloggers and “household names” that he’s compiled over at his blog. Talk about interactive blogging!

Certainly many in the mainstream media are already on Twitter, but I’m not sure that Twitter is organized as well as FriendFeed for conversations and the 140 character limitation limits meaty quotes that a blogger or journalist might print. FriendFeed might be better suited for this sort of use. It will be interesting to watch this sort of use and see if we don’t see more of it in the future.

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  1. Aaron says:

    Marshall has used Twitter as a source in the past, but as you note, FriendFeed keeps all the related conversation (mostly) together in a way that Twitter doesn’t (at least not without third party tools such as Summize).

    I don’t know that it’ll be right for every story, but when the story focuses on something that’s very webby, very 2.0ish, and very close to the userbases of social media sites, not including user reactions would seem to be a major omission.

  2. Louis Gray says:

    This started happening back in February. I wrote a post on it:

    FriendFeed Discussions Break Through the Walled Garden
    http://www.louisgray.com/live/2008/02/friendfeed-discussions-break-through.html

    Since then, it has only increased with regularity.