How I Filter The Noise, Jason Keath

with 6 Comments

How We FilterThe vast amounts of information available online for any subject can get overwhelming quickly. As a self confessed news junkie, I dive in every day and devour massive amounts of news. Still, it becomes daunting.

We all cobble together our own method of sorting and filtering through the noise.

The “How I Filter The Noise” guest blog post series will is meant to be an insight with a few examples of how people find their way through such a wild web of content. Hopefully we can all learn a little bit. Thanks to the half dozen guest bloggers that will be joining me in sharing their filter strategies over the next week or two. Look for their posts soon.

I Stopped Tracking EVERYTHING

My Google Reader, a key to almost all filtering strategies, use to be full of Mashable, TechCrunch, ReadWriteWeb, and several other massive tech and social media blogs. Each of these blogs ramp up a dozen or two posts a day. At one point I was trying to skim through hundreds of blog posts and news articles each day. Trying to take in this amount of information was impossible. All I ended up doing is making it more difficult to find the news I cared the most about.

My middle ground was only subscribing to about 6 of the 30-40 bloggers that write for these sites – The ones who I thought touched on the most relevant information for me. This was a large improvement but still did not give me the relevance I was seeking.

I Steal My Reading List from Friends

google-friendsWithin Google Reader, you subscribe to articles that your friends share, as opposed to standard RSS feeds. I have been using this feature more and more recently and find it does wonders for screening quality content. I am more or less stealing the reading lists of my friends.

Not all my friends use this feature and not all of the ones that do share things I care about. But I have focused on about a dozen folks who share great stuff almost daily, but not so much content that it overwhelms me.

I Focus With A Second Twitter Account

Yes I follow somewhere near 30 thousand people on Twitter, and no I do not listen to all of them. I, of course, filter.

My main filter on Twitter is a second personal Twitter account where I follow about 150 people.

tweetie 2nd twitter account

The second Twitter account is what I use to listen to the people I most care about. It is comprised of designers, social media thought leaders, friends, and people in my home town of Charlotte. It is my go to pulse for the internet. I use Tweetie on the iPhone and Tweetdeck on my desktop to easily listen from this second account, while still being able to reply from my main, public Twitter account, @jakrose.

I Find The Highlights

For technology I use Techmeme. They rarely miss a big tech story and usually have it hours or days before any other news outlet. Tweetmeme is fast becoming a good solution for this too. For politics I browse Politico. For any other subject I either check Digg‘s specific categories or Twitter Search.

That is it. Find valuable friends on Google Reader. Use a focused second Twitter account. And find a way to catch the highlights.

SERIES How I Filter the Noise – Jason Keath, Taylor Davidson, Beth Harte, Hermione Way, Wayne Sutton

6 Responses

  1. Kevin
    |

    Have you tried PostRank?

  2. Kevin
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    Have you tried PostRank?

  3. jakrose
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    I have Kevin. Played with it a little bit. It definitely has potential. It
    is not a core piece of my filtering strategy yet.

  4. Jason
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    Not too dissimilar from my strategy… every feed goes into only five folders in Google Reader — Must Read, Read in Time, Purge if Needed, In Limbo, and Status/Personal.

    RE: GR and twitter, do you have “favorites” or “stars” tactics? I use Byline to sync GR to my iPhone, glancing at headlines and starring until I get to a PC (or reading there in cache if in place for a bit).

    I favorite twitter updates with links I might find interesting, esp in tweetie on the go (sometimes I'll save to instapaper too).

  5. jakrose
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    I have used Twitter favorites from the iPhone like that. One specific way is for blog post ideas. I will favorite tweets, from myself or others, that could supply a few blog post ideas for those times when I am searching for new subject matter.

    I will definitely check out Byline. You are the second person to mention it in response to this post. Sounds good for plane rides and the like

  6. Wayne Sutton
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    Your filters are very similar to mine Jason.