Nicholas Chirls, Seed Investments at betaworks

Read what else Nicholas Chirls is reading for work

Quibb lets you share what you're reading for work. Use Quibb to share news about your industry, discuss what matters, and see what colleagues are reading.

Our mission is to connect professionals over business news and informed commentary — targeting every industry, profession, and geography.

Likes Comments

You also earned new followers on twitter via Quibb!

Reply · Tweet ·
Quibb, Uber

I've always thought of Quibb as Twiiter minus food pics, 4sq checkins, plus professional context ;) But definitely agree on the level of engagement- I get better and more social feedback on Quibb than on Twitter, even with 1/30 of the followers. Can't imagine what it'll look like at scale.

Director of Marketing at Playerize

Loved chatting with Sandi MacPherson about what it could look like at scale. That's the trick, right? :)

Reply · Tweet ·
Co-Founder at Onboardly

The community is highly curated = less fluff, more stuff!

Reply · Tweet ·
Product Manager at Consumer Medical

I agree. I haven't posted / commented too much but for the little I have - immediate interaction vs. twitter is night and day.

Reply · Tweet ·
Platform at N3TWORK

Interesting stats. Twitter-driven traffic still trumps quibb-driven traffic for my blog but gaming is pretty geographically diverse (and thus my readership is) and quibb's userbase is, Id guess, 90% US-based at the moment.

Reply · Tweet ·
Editor-in-Chief at Quibb

Quick note, 100% gut-informed - There are concentrations of members from outside the US. Sweden, Korea, India, Canada immediately come to mind. I'm not sure of the exact breakdown, but I feel 90% US is a bit high. It's tough to know for sure, location isn't required upon signup and not everyone (even really active members) complete their profile. However, I do feel like the breakdown of contributors/commenters is slightly more US-scewing vs. the total membership.

Editor-in-Chief at Quibb

Some data from last 28d, based on PVs so not representative of breakdown of actual members
US is approx 60% total PVs

I'll play devil's advocate here...

With Twitter, you're posting into users' ephemeral streams, many attached to people may not happen to be look at that stream at the right moment. On Quibb you're posting to a community space specifically intended for discussion of submitted links, and one that currently has relatively low turnover for the featured slots. Advantage Quibb right out of the gate. :)

But I'm also not sure that's the full story.

Right now your Quibb link has 44 views, seven stars, and 17 comments.

A quick look at Twitter suggests that you got six favorites and three @replies to your tweet, plus nine people Twittering the link to their own followers. No way for me to know what the total clickthroughs on the ten Twitter shares of your link were, but in my experience a link that's in ten tweets pushes a reasonable amount of traffic.

Looking at it this way, Quibb barely edges out Twitter on one-click feedback, seven stars to six favorites, but if you take tweets of your link as an implied endorsement then maybe Twitter is ahead on this front.

On traffic, my guess (and it is a guess) is that you got more visits from Twitter than you did from Quibb, so advantage Twitter.

The place where Quibb wins flat out is thoughtful discussion, but that's something that falls well outside Twitter's wheelhouse in pretty much all situations.

So to me it ends up being a question of your goal. If getting distribution for your post is the goal, it looks like Twitter wins (no surprise, Quibb is a closed community and just isn't going to get the same kind of distribution). If getting discussion around your post happening is the goal, Quibb wins (again, no real surprise, as that's what Quibb is trying to achieve).

Though a related question: you posted to both Quibb and Branch, how was the experience/response different across those two approaches?

Seed Investments at betaworks

Really good points here. At a very high level I was simply impressed w/ the Quibb distribution and engagement considering the size of the community and my social graph here (small). I didn't mention Branch, but I will say that I was disappointed with the engagement / responses, though part of that may be the time constraints of the folks I invited to discuss the topic with (and maybe they just don't want to discuss with me!) Generally speaking, engagement on any platform increases the likelihood of someone to post / blog / write again because it just feels good knowing that other people are interacting with you and your content. It sucks to go to a room / bar and feel like you're the only one there. Quibb is doing a good (in fact surprisingly good) job at making me feel like I'm a part of an engaged community, regardless of the exact numbers compared to twitter.

Partner at USV

The community here is very very dense . . in a good way. Will it always remain that dense? Should it always? I have no idea but those are some of the interesting questions. Sometimes I get bummed out when I see a link here to, say a techcrunch article. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but I can see that stuff anywhere and everywhere. I am trying to see what happens, for example, if I only share blog posts, or if from something mainstream then I add my own commentary. ymmv

I'm just starting to get engaged via quibb, and have to agree with the density comment of quibb as it relates to depth of conversation vs. breadth of distribution. I find myself choosing to comment here rather than the articles/blog posts themselves because of the high quality of conversation happening here.

Reply · Tweet ·
User Researcher at Twitter

Agree. This is also why Quibb beats out any LinkedIn group I've ever joined. Quality of content is way more thoughtful than the often self-serving/spammy "industry" articles posted in LinkedIn groups. That leads to better discussions that end with more insightful commentary than a "check out my site" signoff.

Seed Investments at betaworks

Density is a good term here. Possibly creating distinct verticals will help maintain it? The fact that it's mainly tech / startup people here improves it at the moment. Maybe a stackoverflow type model would as soon as there is a critical mass of food enthusiasts / professionals, that's the next community to be launched. Not sure if that's the strategy, but seems as though that may maintain the least for a while...

Reply · Tweet ·
Editor-in-Chief at Quibb

Stackoverflow vs. Follower model - I think back to my experience working in Climate Change Adaptation in Toronto. To do my job (well), I had to stay up-to-date on news related to new regulations (federal, provincial, and municipal), high-level climate change information and research, whitepapers from various NGOs and other orgs, scientific journals, case studies from similar cities, research on communicating science with non-experts, etc etc. In that role, I would have had to have been a part of several different Stackoverflow-style verticals.
I chose an asymmetrical follower model for Quibb based on this experience - I'm able to create a stream that's fully reflective of the nuances of my professional role and my news/content/info needs.

Reply · Tweet ·
Editor-in-Chief at Quibb

Quick question Andy - density of... people in general? Similar professionals? Active and recognizable members?

Partner at USV

I think in general/similar professionals. Btw I am not suggesting density is always a good thing (though I think it is in the early days). Monoculturality can be stifling too

Reply · Tweet ·
Platform at N3TWORK

I get annoyed when people forward Techcrunch articles to me; I know it's not, but I take it as an insinuation that I don't follow my industry obsessively (which I do). So I agree that TC / Pandodaily / GigaOM links aren't the best candidates for submission to Quibb unless they're meant only to inspire discussion -- in which case the submission should be supplied with a thoughtful discussion-starting premise (eg "I totally disagree with this article because...")

Seed Investor at Scout Ventures

I don't mind the mainstream articles without comments if my opportunity cost remains low. If I can quickly recognize those items in my stream and move on, I can deal with it. I would get annoyed if I see a block of them in my stream. I do enjoy seeing a link plus comments BUT over time, I'm starting to prefer certain people's comments much more over others. Turns out those are from people who I most agree with, which is human nature.

Many years ago, I used to be that guy who would email mainstream articles to my buddies. I felt there was an implicit "hey, would love your pov on this" but I found out that was lost in translation so most recipients were pretty annoyed. So now, when I do email articles, I try to add in a conversation starter. On Quibb, there's the ask to comment feature which solves that problem.

Co-Founder at Estimote

I don't think I've posted anything yet, but that's the beauty of these mediums - the passive consumption pulls you in. Many later create content.

Director - Digital Ventures at APN News & Media

I think Whitney McNamara has put forward a reasonable argument on the likely impact of Quibb V Twitter. If you apply the rule of thumb that 90% of internet users consumer content passively, 9% curate and 1% create, then the Twitter interactions (albeit lesser on an absolute basis) would have likely reached a far greater consumption audience.

The flip side for me is that Quibb seems to have a model that breaks that old rule. To consume content on Quibb is to curate. By seeing what others are reading, it marries consumption and curation. The simplicity of the interactions through comments also then means that it is relatively easy to create content (in small pieces on top). It's for this reason I don't quite agree with Andrew Weissman's disappointment at Techcrunch articles being here. Sure I can read that anywhere, but I value the critical analysis and discussion of that article that takes place here.

Editor-in-Chief at Quibb

Quick approximate stat - 1/3 of active members have at some point shared a link (along with taking other actions - voting or liking comments), 1/3 have liked/commented on links but never shared a link themselves, and 1/3 never liked/commented/shared but are actively checking out links.

Reply · Tweet ·
Manager Social Media Strategy at Sony Music Entertainment

The Quibb community is still in it's very early stages. Mustn't we forget the law of diminishing returns - eventually a saturation in the medium will lead to less engagement and interaction. That being said, I sense a more tight knit community with a hyper focus - at this stage - setting itself apart from competitive services. To be honest, I have no idea how I even got here. I think I was reading a growth hacker piece by Andrew Chen, posted a comment and Sandi MacPherson responded...and thus a new DAU was acquired. #Props.

Reply · Tweet ·
Director - Digital Ventures at APN News & Media

Pretty sure I got here the same way.

Editor-in-Chief at Quibb

Maybe I'm delusional/overly-optimistic/straight-up cray - I don't believe the 'law of diminishing returns' has to apply here or can't be solved :)

Reply · Tweet ·
Editor-in-Chief at Quibb

Thanks Nick for putting together this follow-up post, super interesting to see the actual stats

Quibb was built to provide rich social feedback when contributing and interacting with people and 'their' content (either something they wrote, or a link/comment they've shared). I see this as very different from what Twitter was built for, and I think that the original intention of a product is very powerful.

I've spoken with several other members who have had a very similar experience to what you're describing here - "I have a blog, but no one comes" and "Twitter is like yelling into a black hole" are two comments that immediately come to mind. Both of these people then went on to tell me about how much feedback they get from sharing content on Quibb, and how it's often more thoughtful and meaningful.

If you're interested, some early thoughts on this too - with 2 opposing opinions in the comments :)

EVP, Client Services at Superfly

Quality delivers quality. There's a well filtered group of people here based on having discovered the service sharing and discussing quality content. What I really like about Quibb is the caliber of content and often the discussion that follows.

Twitter has never cared about this factor and that's why they have never built threads. I was an early Jaiku user as well as someone who enjoys Google+. Maintaining focus around a point is so much much different from the flow on twitter which is considerably more transient.

Product Lead at Flurry

Agreed. Not only is Quibb great for discovering content, I've actually found that Quibb encouraged me to post more because I know that if I write something and share it I can have a really meaningful discussion about the content, debate real topics and learn from the community.

Founder at Glyder

This is very cool! Credit to Sandi MacPherson and the awesome community she's built here.

Publisher Development at PlayHaven

I think perhaps this is not a Twitter vs Quibb, but rather a Twitter AND Quibb. Twitter serves its purpose of reaching many people in a pool of millions and in more of a highlight-reel manner. Quibb serves its separate purpose by reaching an info-market of people who come here to engage, to learn, to comment, to like, and to discuss with like-minded semi-peers. You're right that Twitter does not facilitate a lot of conversation. Twitter is not designed for that. However, Quibb is. Use them both, and you can get a great sense of how impactful your blog post is.

If I'm comparing two pairs of shoes--a pair of running shoes, and a pair of soccer cleats...they both may be great shoes, but have separate functions. The cool part for me is that you had a blog post that was interacted with by Twitter followers, and talked about with Quibb followers--two different interaction pools that give you separate insights.

Reply · Tweet ·
Senior Analyst at EEDAR

I use Quibb because it allows me to efficiently find intellectually stimulating content and conversation related to my field, a task I was inefficiently accomplishing with twitter. To reduce the amount of non-relevant content that flowed through my twitter stream, I have to constantly cull my following list to 20 to 30 mavens/pundits/professionals that primarily distributed ideas and content rather than personal thoughts and conversations.

As an information consumer (content creation is different, twitter obviously has value for distribution and self promotion), I do think that twitter has value as an early news source for your particular industry (things like studio layoffs always hit twitter first). But once again, this requires wading through so much non-relevant conversation and personal tweets that its not worth it unless you really need breaking news. For example, I would be heavily involved in twitter if I was in games journalism and getting news 30 minutes earlier than other people was important to me.

I agree with previous posters that the nascent Quibb is characterized by by being tech/start-up focused and relatively dense. It will be interesting to see if it remains as useful to me as it grows.

Toby Padilla, Product at betaworks Toby Padilla
Product at betaworks
Andrew McLaughlin, Digg, betaworks, Instapaper Andrew McLaughlin
Digg, betaworks, Instapaper
Summer Bedard, Designer at betaworks Summer Bedard
Designer at betaworks
Sam Mandel, Partner at betaworks Sam Mandel
Partner at betaworks
Matt Hackett, Hacker in Residence at betaworks Matt Hackett
Hacker in Residence at betaworks
Gilad Lotan, Chief Data Scientist at betaworks Gilad Lotan
Chief Data Scientist at betaworks
Lynn Maharas, Sr Front End Developer at betaworks Lynn Maharas
Sr Front End Developer at betaworks
John Borthwick, CEO at betaworks John Borthwick
CEO at betaworks
Joshua Auerbach, CFO at betaworks Joshua Auerbach
CFO at betaworks
Alia Ormut Fleishman, Designer at Foursquare Alia Ormut Fleishman
Designer at Foursquare