Friday, June 19, 2009

Trends: Require More Than Just Censoring And Duct Tape

censoredImage by .mw via Flickr

The ability to find out what's hot online through the trending topics on Twitter is a great feature. As Twitter has pushed through into the mainstream though the top trending topics has lost a lot of it's value and credibility. This is because users have learnt how to game the system and also so have the spammers!

Inappropriate terms have featured may times before as trending topics but within minutes of the latest terms (discussed here on ReadWriteWeb) peaked they were removed. Censorship doesn't disguise the fact that the trending topics feature is broken but when will it receive an overhaul?

Many Twitter users organise their activity through desktop clients and applications, this has proved popular and is core to the ecosystem of the service. Possibly the developers could open the API to allow for more innovation around the trending topics. Arrange grouping the topics into popular categories: Technology, Politics, News, Sport, Offbeat etc. I would like to see this introduced, especially considering my usage of clients and applications. Can you think of any alternatives?

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