I really like paper.li, the social news startup that compiles top shares from your Twitter account into a newspaper. It’s fun, but also incredibly useful. I’ve been testing it with my own account for the last two weeks (the Tied Tiger Tribune) and it’s great as a personalised source of interesting things, like a more social StumbleUpon.
It’s also given me an idea:
The two problems with the Tied Tiger Tribune are:
- My personal paper is not relevant to anyone other than me, so they have no clear reason to read it. That means it’s just clutter.
- In order to distribute the paper around to others, paper.li sends a tweet from my account. It also @-mentions top contributors for the day. Some people like this, but others regard generic social newspapers like mine as spam.
I think there is great potential for a social newspaper for people interested in games. It would be compiled from the links shared by game developers, fans, journalists and other interested folks. And because they want to be involved, it’s not spam.
So my simple experiment is about creating that. I’ve made an official whatgamesare Twitter account, and the What Games Are Journal. As the number of people that whatgamesare follows increases, so too the number of contributors to the paper grows, and that makes the paper more interesting.
However I don’t want to go on a mass follower-finding spree to get this started. Instead I want you to follow the whatgamesare account.
My thinking is that if you follow the account, then that is a vote to be included as a part of the experiment. I will receive an email notification that you have followed me, and – as long as I don’t think you’re a spam account – I’ll follow you back. By following you, that means you are then included as a potential source for the paper.
That’s all you need to do, and if you want to subsequently un-follow the whatgamesare account on Twitter, that’s okay too. I won’t un-follow you back. What I’m looking for here is not followers (I have over 1,000 on Twitter already) but people who want to contribute to and read a social newspaper about games.
(And if you really want to help, share this post to your friends so that they might get into the experiment as well.)