Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Semil Shah On Quora

Frequently Asked Questions About Quora The incredible growth of Quora has also led to an equally incredible growth in chatter, punditry, and analysis ..... If organized correctly, the information contributed to and categorized on Quora could not only result in the best Q&A site ever, but it may also transform into a new type of search engine and destination for information. .... Those who contribute content to Quora do so because, in exchange for their contribution, Quora gives them the chance to establish a brand, reputation, and areas of expertise. ..... Quora has a very good idea of what interests its users have, and that is very, very valuable knowledge. .... where the mutual meeting place is Quora.

The Thin Wedge Of Quora a new class of content creators and is well on its way to successfully tackle the Q&A problem that has been attempted by nearly 30 different companies in the past. ...... the concept of network blogging ..... the other edge—the thick edge—search ...... a world where big brands have links to their Quora topic page on their homepage to interact with others ..... Quora offers brands a more civil forum to engage with users than Facebook, Twitter or other social networks without having to appear cute. Even if brands resist, enough influential Quora users could engage around a topic, such as customer service at Comcast, and create a situation in which Comcast would have no choice but to respond publicly. ..... Email is considered “broken” by many who feel inundated by spam, offers, and long messages. Twitter’s forced character limit and asymmetric network presents a new model to manage inbound messages, where the user controls who has the right to message and where those messages must be less than 140 characters. Quora Messages, while open like Facebook, is clean, light, and loads fast, and is more secure than Twitter Direct Messages today. ...... Topics can be automatically created and collect relevant questions, where the user can search for the latest user reviews of new electronics, automobiles, and a host of other verticals. ..... Where Google Wave failed as a collaborative solution, Quora may be flexible and simple enough to succeed. ..... Quora users are already sharing external links and a few photographs, so more picture- and video-sharing could make it a stronger source for news. ....... a major source for long-form and investigative journalism. ...... the long-term commitment of Quora users to contribute content to the site in exchange for the opportunity to socially interact with others based on interests, to build reputations, and to collect endorsements ..... the content contributed to Quora will constantly be improved, refined, aggregated, and structured. Like a stone in a tumbler, the edges will get smoother. One effect of the tumbling and fine-tuning is that the site will become better optimized for search. ..... The opportunities in new search methods are numerous and the future is exciting, but it’s also hazy with low visibility. We simply just don’t know how we’ll search differently, a theme which is at the root of many of the fascinating heavyweight fights going on in Silicon Valley.

What Is Quora’s Biggest Challenge? winning the Crunchies award for best new startup ...... The company hopes its forthcoming “PeopleRank” algorithm will help readjust current conditions in favor of signal-rich activity...... For the consumer, the best answers may not bubble up to the top and for popular contributors, they may be pelted with up-vote notifications. ...... threads with too much activity may lose some lustre. ..... the key challenge for Quora will be to continue to maintain an environment that fosters genuine, interesting, and fun engagement between real people—not brands or companies. Users will need strong incentives to keep contributing and consuming information on the site. Threads must continually improve over time. ...... a site that helps them discover new knowledge and connect with other people with similar primary and/or secondary interests ...... could lead to more meaningful real-world relationships

One thing is for sure. Quora is catching on. It has that unmistakable buzz. This is a real company with real possibilities. I pontificated on the topic myself early this month.

500 Followers on Quora
As For Quora: Blogging Still Rules
Quora: A Satellite Company To Twitter
Quora Tip: Follow 25 Topics, 50 People To Get Started
Do You Qro?
2011: Quora's Year?
Getting Popular At Quora

Vivek Wadhwa, on the other hand, has been singing a contrary tone.

Vivek Wadhwa: Why I Don’t Buy the Quora Hype It has been a very nice private club; but it’s not for the general public..... The quality of answers will decline...... it is a spammers’ paradise. How is Quora going to manage hundreds of thousands—or millions—of unruly users, when even the mighty Google seems to be losing the battle for spam? ..... Robert Scoble expects it to create a “great community and way for people to communicate about what’s interesting in their lives in a new way”. ..... Quora isn’t going to be a Facebook or a Twitter. It is not likely to even catch up with the current market leaders in the Q&A space—Answers.com and Yahoo! Answers (which both get more than 40 million unique visitors a month, compared with Quora’s meager 150,000). ..... My guess is that TechCrunch will stop talking about Quora within a few months and that we’ll be discussing the next big fad.

I, of course, disagree with Vivek.
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