GigaOm needs your help, feedback

26 Comments

Friends, (what else would i call folks who spend so much of their time reading my ramblings and sharing their thoughts and insights) I need your help … fine-tuning gigaom.com! The stats can only tell me which are the most popular pages, or what is the most linked post, or how many people visited for how long. But that’s like playing baseball by sitting in the upper deck. I really don’t know what you like, or dislike. What works, or what doesn’t work.

Since y’all are the ultimate judges and thus the consumers of what I write, it is time for me to step back and ask for your opinion on a few things, which could help improve the site, and your experience. First, I have tried to clean up the categories, and come-up with seven that I think are straight forward and to the point. Here is where I need you to tell me if something works, or doesn’t work. Should we add or drop a category. If yes, then what should it be. Secondly, I want to know, what content annoys you the most, what posts you enjoy the most. Do you like long form, or the short form posts. Is there an area which should be part of my focus, or have I gone too deep and too wide. And finally, I would love to know what your thoughts on having a forum devoted to broadband deployments/consumer VoIP services?

You can leave your comments here, so I can find them in one place. I am going keep this post right up top through the weekend. Regular posting is below the fold, so please bear with me.

Thanks!

26 Comments

shadow

Hi om,

i will be happy if you have mailing list, so when you post something new its go straight to the mailing list…

i will be happy to see counter in the front page and statistic of what prpole read mostly in your web site.

i love your blog :)

Yuri Ammosov

I read the blog only via RSS reader (built-in Tbird to be exact). So all I want for Christmas is a reply-to field to hit “reply” and send an email back. If this email gets added as a comment here, even better.

BridalBeer

i enjoy posts that are less specialized in terms of geekspeak- so i would welcome more on digital lifestyles, even search engine wars, as compared to broadband.

Michael Parekh

More Om…all the time…

just kidding…great site…

one thought since you’re such a prolific blogger and there are tons of posts…it’d be helpful to see which are the most popular posts…

maybe using something like mybloglog (www.mybloglog.com) might be useful.

Otherwise, I think your site is very user-friendly…great design.

thanks.

Surendra Kashyap

Om,

I have started to follow your blog since last 4-5 weeks. I can’t wait to visit your blog page every evening (at leisure) and read your postings. I love to watch growth of Internet. Your focus on WI-FI, Broadband and VoIP is great but I would love to see more posts on IPTV. As one of the posts suggested, I like the concept of technology sector “scoop”. Growth of Internet and its effect in India or in developing country could be worth another category. Digital divide could be another one. I believe, Internet has to become utility like commodity in the all over world to create large platform facilitating building and selling innovative products that will make a difference in everyone’s life.

Keep up the good work.

Surendra

Claeton

more… (see above for original comment)
Your ongoing questions about vonage’s biz model is a good example of the long form that’s stimulating. Also discussions about viability of time-shifting and place-shifting.

iain

Om,
I’ve been a reader of your great blog for over a year.
I’ve been reading it to stay in touch with consumer networking appliances, how they will affect me as a user, how telco/carriers will service these appliances, and how regulation relates to all of this. I like the commentary ( or brain as others have called it) that comes along with the scoops.

* I’ve particulary liked it when you question the “hype”. I liked the “how does skype work stuff”, “the telco wants to control everything view so they’ll continue to build walled gardens – even in the open internet”. This is subtle, but is key to understanding a technologies trajectory. I like the scoop with a layer of business and technical color added.

* I read your site almost everyday. Mainly I link from my Yahoo rss page to specific articles of interest, sometimes I go to your main page, or if I miss a day I like the new archive feature. I’ve never hit a link outside of a specific article. (I’m like the guy above who didn’t know you had links on the side)

*As far as new things. I’d like you to stick to consumer networking appliances. IPTV appliances fit into this category, so commentary on IPTV-STB’s and video services as they emerge from telco vapor-ware to reality would be great. There is so much hype in this area, it would be great to hear you sift out the chaff. This is a huge bet telco’s are taking, and there is no guaranteed killer app identified. Telco’s are going with streaming video because it needs a “killer” network, but what if video goes the iTunes route? This model doesn’t need such a killer network (As bit torrent & MPAA crackdown shows … todays network is pretty good for servicing HDTV DivX files ). Video may just be a “90% business” problem like music was. It is gonna be real fun to watch this play out over the next few years. There is going to be loads of carnage and success. Your commentary would make it even more enjoyable.
* I also like the brief articles that show you’re human like us. The family is in town or travel-lag stuff.

Thanks … this is my favorite blog by far.

Sachin Kotwani

Hi Om,

Your site is a delight to read. I would like to see more of your visionary ideas on how current and upcoming technologies can combine to create future applications or services for consumers and businesses alike. I also think you are in a great position to link technology enthusiasts and industry leaders to create great partnerships, be it through new ventures, contracting, or placement… I’ll leave that up to your imagination!
The long post format is great because it provides detailed information on the topics. Newsflashes that can be found on other media outlets, however, could lend themselves better to shorter posts with a link.
Keep up the great work you are doing!

Wes Felter

Like Abhi, I’d like to see more entries on the front page.

Abhi

I’ve been meaning to suggest some changes.
First is, if I am not able to visit your site for 2-3 days, then many interesting articles slip beneath the radar. It would be good to have 30 article titles(the ones you see in the archive, http://gigaom.com/archives.php) present on the RHS of your homepage. Also, below or above that, you can include 15 of your most popular article titles. Why is this important? I’m guessing most people come to your website, read the main page and maybe leave a comment and leave. Once they come to your site, keep them interested as long as possible. This means you offer them reading matter in a easy to click laid out format. But if you do this, remember that for many articles, the RHS archives and popular articles display will be longer than the article itself. Therefore you might want to disable this when readers are viewing individual articles.

Next, if you want to incorporate a forum at gigaom, look no further than vbulletin. It is the fastest forum out there. It is less intensive on the cpu than other forums and has tons of features(and customization options.)

I don’t know how willing you are to change from wordpress(I’m guessing you’ll be quite reluctant) but if you want to integrate your site and forums more closely, look at http://www.vbadvanced.com/. It comes free with vbulletin so even if you don’t switch your main site to it, you can set it up as a experiment. Give people an option to receive a briefing of each day’s articles using bloglet or similar.

And lastly, please stick with the long form posts.

Reilly

Om,

Thanks for giving us this opportunity.

I think the greatest take-away from your blog is that you are able to “synthesize” business and technology information and make sense of it. Scoops are great, but I feel the most important thing for me and my peer group is the perspective you provide on new business deals and mergers.

One other area I’d wish you would include — although, frankly, I don’t know how you keep up with the massive amount of content you already provide — is to review new technology innovations, whether consumer products or services or new enterprise systems, and tell us why they might be important in the future. Like a “looking ahead” type feature.

Beyond that, just a note about the right column categories — when I first started reading your blog I thought they were actually text ads (while not completely, they do somewhat resemble Google ads). Possibly making them red links like your entry titles would solve this? I realize the Google ads you have are in red, but for some reason the category headings appear ad-like to me. Just a thought — not a huge gripe since I rarely use the categories, because I’m a daily reader.

brian

Om, if/when you score some interviews with top tech people/columnists, post the transcripts on your blog.

Pankaj

Om

I have a link to your blog from my blog. I follow your “ramblings” weekly, and at times daily. I am lean more on the VoIP news and commentary than other stuff. The one thing I have noticed missing, starkly, is the coverage of VoIP in the corporate workplace. I get a feeling that you dwell a lot on consumer VoIP, and thats great. While consumer VoIP is in its infancy (ok well, maybe toddler hood) corporate VoIP has bloomed in the recent years. So many carriers are (or have) basically retrofitted their networks into VoIP “islands” and are communicated via Edge devices with PSTN networks or peering directly via VoIP with other VoIP “islands”. This is a significant development at the core of the network which is going to sustain a lot of the consumer VoIP growth that the likes of Vonage are banking on. So those are my 2 cents. Keep Blogging away – you have a good following.

Om Malik

Fine James,

as might have figured, lindsay is still on my mind. big time.

anyway guys i appreciate the feedback so far, and i am going to take all this and turn it into more worthwhile and focused content. your kind words are appreciated.

Tony E, as luck would have it, I did start IPTV section. I think it is not highlighted as yet. hopefully i can make that change as soon.

Lars

Om,

compliments on your blog. The distinguishing feature is the brain you put in your posts. Comments and conjectures on industry trends are definitely among the things I would like to continue seeing.

I find the posts where some math is involved particularly appealing, such as “Vonage Scary Big Spending Ways” and “Vonage Will Need Money Again”.

Where possible, e.g. like for IPO-pricing, more posts like that are a real value-add.

Lars

Mark Evans

om,
the blog is great, and your decision to seek feedback on how to change/improve it is a healthy part of the creative process. it means you’re still engaged in what you’re writing and, more important, interested in meeting the needs of your readers. i have always giga.com to be one of “the” benchmarks as i toil away on my blog.

cheers, mark

Tony E

First of all, I really enjoy your blog. I also like the clean organization of content. It would be interesting to read your thoughts on the IPTV sector more often, since this will be a hot topic, and pushed to consumers soon. And of course IPTV is related to many of the topics you already cover so well.

Dan

I like your site for deal gossip in the social/blogging space. I tend to ignore the more telcom-centric stuff. Basically, rumors of deals and rumors of numbers once the deals are announced.

Om Malik

Jeeves

thanks for your thoughts and points. I appreciate them… i look forward to more specifics if possible. The Scoop is a good idea and I will make sure I include that in the next mini-upgrade.

Justin

I think the blog is fantastic. I get a broad cross section of what is in and what is out in the world of Broadband.

However, I’d like to see some more content about search engines. The post about Yahoo! getting its “mojo” back was one of the best linked to stories that you’ve written so far this year…I think (have no idea what your numbers are).

So more of that, yes?

Om Malik

claeton

thanks for your comment. i was wondering, if you could tell me the posts you appreciated and those you did not. it lets me get a better sense of your thought process.

the reason i ask this, is because my long form is also part of an ongoing conversation, so sometimes i tend to skip the obvious (or what i think is the obvious).

the point about apps is good. i have been thinking along those lines as well. i really need to make sure the audience gets what it wants/needs!

claeton

You are differentiated by relaying important developments *AND* providing insightful, compact analysis backed up where possible with factoids. Too many blogs out there are mere “repeaters.”

Yours is one of a handful of blogs I follow closely. But I scan the feed and don’t look at the categories.

Thlinking is fine, but long form provides more to chew on.

Do more “picture building”, pulling together a series of seemingly disparate pieces of information to reveal something hitherto unrecognized. You’re good at that.

If you must expand, then look more at applications and services that are only now possible because of ubiquitous broadband into the home and small biz.

Don’t loose your irreverence.

NB: I am a poor model for the world.

jeeves

Om: Glad to help. I have set this has my default home page and immensely enjoy your ramblings!

If there is a category that I want, and really appreciated recently, it is what I would call “The Scoop”. Your breaking story on Yahoo buying Dialpad, or the potential of a Yahoo/Skype merger was much appreciated. I know I can find the same story under say VOIP, but such stories, I feel, deserve a category of their own, with a link to their technology parent. Second, the intersection of VOIP, Mobile Telephony and Social Networking is going to unleash a whole suite of Technology and Business Innovations. Yup, a focus on VOIP consumer services is certainly timely.

Coverage of companies in stealth mode would be an added plus. I know at least one player who is monitoring your site for acquisitions ideas. An occasional interview or two. But not much. Be very selective.

More to follow. I thought I would send you my preliminary thoughts. Cheers and keep it up!

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