scobleizer – Stay N Alive

Louis Gray Tops Robert Scoble in Web Presence

pictures-909f19f1ff5645b2b95c94e0d9fc74d6-large.jpgpictures-251dca2ee33f11dc8d47003048343a40-large.jpgAs many are aware, it’s hard to avoid personalities like Louis Gray and Robert Scoble on the internet these days. Chances are that if you belong to a social network, and have friended them, they have interacted with your updates on the particular networks you belong to in one way or another. Louis and Robert seem to have a particular “omnipresence” to them, and both have an amazing knack for tracking the latest news and updates, and most importantly staying up with the actual people they follow. If you mention one of their names anywhere on the internet, there’s a pretty good chance they’ll know and respond in some fashion or another.

Louis Gray is relatively new to this however. Scoble has touted him as being “the next Scoble“, but in reality he has only become popular in just the last year or so. Scoble has been pretty popular for several years now, and a lot of his ability to be in so many networks at a time comes from experience. I’ve witnessed both of their abilities to multi-task and share and follow activities of others they follow first-hand, and it’s quite amazing to watch! Both are just as good at actually listening to most of the people they follow on each network they belong to.

A great example of this is in a panel at BlogWorld Expo last week, Stowe Boyd (aka StoBo) said something which Drew Olanoff re-tweeted. Scoble just so happened to be driving back home, but next thing we know, Robert was joining the conversation through FriendFeed and Twitter, all from the wheel of his car! We hope that Maryame was the one driving. Both of their abilities to know what is being said that is important at any given time is amazing.

In doing some research today though, it appears that Louis Gray may have surpassed Robert Scoble in the number of networks he belongs to. Doing some research on the recently announced, the username, “scobleizer” is on 26 of the listed networks. I am unaware of any other username that Robert Scoble uses around the internet, so we have to assume this is all for him. “louisgray”, the main username for Louis Gray, is on 18 networks. However, if we take the username, “louismg”, another username he uses (taken from his FriendFeed shares), we get 15 more networks he belongs to. Add to that the username, “asypta”, which Louis uses on stumbleupon and delicious, we get 5 more. That would, assuming these are all his usernames, make Louis Gray involved in a total of 38 networks. This is why Louis Gray has been so successful over the last year. I believe Louis Gray has just become “omnipresent”.

Any other names you can think of that rival Louis Gray or Robert Scoble in network involvement? I believe these two are tops in my book.

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Scoble and Twitter, Behind the Scenes

IMG_0024.pngToday I had a very unique opportunity to in many ways get in the middle of the Twitter Fiasco, the VentureBeat article suggesting that Robert Scoble was the reason for Twitter’s failures, and Robert’s response to it. It was an amazing experience that I will never forget, and before I start I want to thank Robert for bringing me along to be able to participate and hear all of this, first hand (and still getting me back to the airport in time). Robert Scoble’s such an amazing guy and no one could ever tell me otherwise – I wish all could meet him in person, hang out with him, etc. like I was able to do today.

Originally Robert and I were just going to go up to the Disqus new offices and see the founders, Daniel Ha and Jason Yan (they said they are readers of this blog!). However, today around lunch he called and said we were going to make a pit stop at the Twitter offices in South Park. I was told they had made an offer to him (and he was happy to accept) to come by and chat about the recent blog posts and frustration between the two.

When we got to Twitter I was actually quite impressed by the professionalism of Ev and Biz at Twitter, along with Robert as they discussed the matter. There was some nervousness on both parts I could tell, but after the cards were laid out on the table and both sides understood, I think both felt a little better about the situation. In the end, here’s what I got out of the conversation (which you can view via Robert’s Qik stream here):

  • There is still a long way to go before Twitter will have a fully functional product – they are in the process of re-architecting it all so they can scale further as it grows further.
  • It does seem they’re still trying to work with it to make the existing system work with what they have.
  • The problems they are having are NOT because of big “whale” (and I doubt the picture on Twitter’s error page was meant to reflect this) users such as Robert Scoble or Michael Arrington.
  • The problems they are having are very much due to problems with their current architecture, and in particular the way their API is currently set up to handle. Their system was built as a prototype and ended up becoming the product.
  • There is no good immediate solution to this. As they remove API features, applications like Twhirl and TweetScan, and other 3rd party applications with thousands of users will fail, and thus the users will complain and leave. They simply can’t punish the developers as a whole because it would end up offending their users as well.
  • There are still some pretty smart people at Twitter and I really think they know what they’re doing – they’re just stuck between a rock and a hard spot because they designed their architecture wrong.

The most interesting thing for me, and should be for developers as well, IMO, came at the end however, and I think it’s a smart move the faster they can implement it. Twitter is looking into the possibility of having a better way of tracking the Applications developers write on the Twitter API. By doing such, they can first of all put an end to spammy applications that are abusing the system and killing their traffic with too many unnecessary requests (similar to the way Facebook does with notification limits), but secondly they can begin to organize the Applications and provide a centralized directory for all the Twitter applications out there.

I recorded this video to get Robert’s thoughts on the interview afterwards – I think he shares the same feelings as I do:

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Getting Robert Scoble’s Thoughts After the Twitter Interview from Jesse Stay on Vimeo.

You can also see some more of my thoughts afterwards, although I think I was still processing it after we were done so I didn’t say much. You can see that on Robert’s Qik stream here.

In all, I think while there’s still a long way for Twitter to get everything worked out, what they said to us was very promising. It’s promising, yet frustrating at the same time because I know it may still be some time. They are willing to accept help and ideas. If you are a developer and want to offer your time to help them out, join their mailing list, offer your assistance in any way. Most of all, as was pointed out, if you’re going to do any heavy hitting on their API, let’s talk to them the same way they’re talking to us now. Let’s build an open communication between the developers and the Twitter dev team themselves and I think perhaps we can all work together to make Twitter an even better place than it was before.

I’m going to talk a little more about my trip to the Bay area in another post coming up. I feel like I visited half the Web 2.0 internet, in person, in a matter of 3 days, and I’m still processing it all. The Bay is an amazing place that you just have to see for yourself to believe. Now Robert – my offer still stands if you ever want to come out to Salt Lake and have me show you around next time!