Thursday, November 03, 2011

Steve Rosenbaum – Curation Nation - #devlearn keynote

These are my live notes from DevLearn November 4, 2011 in Las Vegas.

Steve Rosenbaum (@magnify) author of Curation Nation (,

The world is changing fast. Curation is a good news/bad news thing.

The cloud – sounds so fluffy and nice. It’s being presented as an awesome, good thing. But clouds are often gray and scary – storm clouds!

Look at what we’re trying to managing in our personal lives – it’s similar with our data lives!

30% of respondents to a survey check their email in the middle of night.

The is too much signal. There is too much noise.

We start tuning out; plugging our ears. This becomes a road block.

Between the dawn of time and 2003 we created 5 exabytes of info – we now create that much info every two days. This is a big change.

Twitter is on the path to 10 billion tweets.

It would take you 8 years to watch all of the video that was uploaded to YouTube yesterday.

The world we now live in: walking in to the library of congress and someone’s erased all the dewey decimals and moved the books around.

This just happened.

Facebook now stores 140 billion photographs.  Way more than the library of congress.

The deal is – we all need to become curators.

July 2010 – the US time spent online – when it changed to open architecture where everyone is a publisher – that’s where Facebook usage starting far outstripping all the other sites.

US is only #6 on the list of countries and numbers of internet users.  Nigeria is #3. Iran is #5.

We used to talk about surfing the web.

This is a problem that we collectively get to solve. Information is knowledge and learning. Unless it’s just in a big pile – then it looks like junk.

Need to make information digestible for people when and where they need it.

Say goodbye to search.

Google yourself. Look at the images and see how much of that is NOT you. (Steve says he often goes to Facebook now first to find people.)

In the last 6 months it’s just gotten harder to find things. Google is based on static links to static web pages. But that’s changed – we’re tweeting now.

Say hello to curation.

Content is king. Needs to become Curation is king.

When your network clues you into something important – thank them – they’re your curator.  Don’t feel bad that you missed something.

Who in the room identifies themselves as a publisher.  Publishers – when you retweet something you’re broadcasting, you’re publishing.

The #1 food magazine (Taste of Home) is published by Reader’s Digest and it’s all content submitted by readers.

In the world going forward, where there’s too much information, people need to dial stuff down. Are they dialing you down or are they dialing you in? Help them find information that matters. We live in a world where everyone need’s filters.

Humans replace algorithms.

Ideas replace data.

Human beings are not replaceable.

3 powerful ideas about curation

1. Choose your digital clothing.  We make conscious choices about the clothes we put on in the morning. We need to make conscious choices about our digital.  Rosenbaum reads 450 tweets a day – and RTs about 3-5 of those.  He filters his subject so we don’t need to read those 450.

On Foursquare you check in and tell people you’re going to a cool movie but not that you’re at the dry cleaner. Be conscious.

2. Listening. Listening is more powerful than speaking. I can scan faster and pull out the important info more quickly than a computer.

3. Tools. Try a tool – you can’t use them all – try something for a while and see what works.  Feel obliged to experiment with something (storify, scoop it,, etc.) Find the tool that speaks to you.

Use whatever you want. Learning to play with this stuff is important.

In a noisy world, your customers require clarity.

Best Curation Practices

You define quality for your audience. Leverage your natural expertise. Don’t be afraid to scare people away but have an internal voice about quality.

Context is key. Always publish things contextually – clarify sources, update headlines. Your readers need to know why contextually it matters to them, not just the link.

Well-curated site tells a story.  What things get your attention on a daily basis? TechCrunch has a story – it has an edge, voice, perspective.

Have a theme and embrace it. Once you have a curated voice, pov, tone, make sure you build on it. People come to  your for you POV.

In today’s world “brand me” is bigger than the company brand.  Organizations have to trust your people.

The volume of information we’re putting out there is not going to slow down. Your job is to deliver the best of the best in the verticals you define. 

Today we’re all curators.

The web becomes a human network.

It’s not Facebook.  It’s not Google.  It’s not Amazon.

It’s US.

Have a theme and embrace it.

1 comment:

Paul said...

Thanks for yet another superb summary, almost as good as being there, and much cheaper ;-o