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Summary:

Summify’s sale to Twitter this week was good news for the startup, but bad news for many of its users, who expressed frustration that the news aggregation service would be mothballed post-deal. But startups News.me and Percolate are now vying to take on Summify’s users.

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Summify, the startup whose service sent email summaries of the most interesting links from users’ social networks, announced its sale to Twitter this week. While it was good news for Summify’s five-person team, users of the service have reacted with a good deal of trepidation, since Summify has already stopped accepting new users and plans to remove a number of existing features post-deal. The long-term future of Summify’s product is certainly in limbo.

But a couple of startups have already stepped up to fill any vacancy that has arisen. News.me and Percolate, which both provide personalized news aggregation services, are positioning themselves as a safe haven for Summify users post-Twitter deal.

News.me made no secret of its intentions, writing a company blog post published Friday entitled “Summify Users: We’re here for you. You’re Safe.” News.me said it saw a “massive influx” of questions about its Daily Digest social networking and news aggregation product, directly asked Summify users to share what they liked most about Summify’s product, and asked for advice on what features News.me should implement.

Percolate made a similar play for new customers with a new section of its website dedicated to Summify users. The webpage reads: “Friends of Summify, Thanks for dropping by. Register below to start receiving your Daily Brew: A digest every morning of the top links from your world.”

It’s a great example of how thriving the web startup scene is today. Users are understandably upset when a beloved service goes away, but the Summify situation this week shows that nowadays, where one successful service closes a door, other startups are more than happy to open a window.

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  1. saidimu apale Friday, January 20, 2012

    Great! Except that all the personalization mojo one accrued with Summify is gone with the wind (or presumably with Twitter in this case). Neither News.me nor Percolate seem to highlight the fact that one would need to start over training each of these services.

    I wish there was an archival format one’s personalization “engine”, not the data but the data points that are used to generate the personalized data. Switching services would be a breeze.

    Then again… if wishes were horses, beggars would ride.

    1. very good point…the http://knowabout.it service (which I built) works hard to train itself based on the data you are already generating and the content already flowing through your streams…ie. you’ve already done all the work you should have to to have a well trained content recommendation system — the last step is just to turn it on ;-)

  2. Joshua Ledgard Friday, January 20, 2012

    If someone is looking for a Summify-type service that won’t abandon them we’re working on http://www.siftsocial.com. We’ll be opening for a beta soon. :)

  3. If you’re going to switch discovery services, you might as well switch to the best kind, those that allow you to get a daily digest in addition to checking your stream any time. That way, you can get way more recommendations than you could get in a daily summary email.

    You can use such a service the same way as a News.me or Percolate, but with the option to see many more recommendations.

    The best way to do this on the web is Trapit (http://trap.it), where I work. Tell it which topics you want to follow, then rate the suggestions it gives you. Recommendations start off fairly good, and only get better with use.

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