We've talked quite a bit about the fragmentation of social media here at AVC. Blogging at WordPress, sharing photos with your friends on Facebook and with the world on Instagram, Tweeting at Twitter, Checking in on Foursquare, Pinning on Pinterest, Tumbling on Tumblr, sharing video on YouTube and audio on Soundcloud. This is where things are going.

There are many reasons for this fragmentation and we've discussed them. I think the big reasons are the move to mobile where features are delivered via an app on your home screen rather than inside some monolithic web app and the desire to curate application specific social graphs instead of one graph to rule them all. 

But regardless of why this is happening, it is happening. And so there is an opportunity to aggregate all of this activity on a single URL where followers can see the totality of a person's social activity.

Enter RebelMouse. Created by former Huffington Post CTO Paul Berry, RebelMouse launched last week in invite only mode. You can request an invite, it's not a velvet rope kind of thing.

Here's my RebelMouse:


Here are some other RebelMouse pages:

Dennis Crowley

Om Malik

Media Redefined


Huffington Post

On the upper left of every RebelMouse page there is a link to find other pages to look at. Discovery is pretty raw at this time but there is clearly an opportunity to do a lot more with it.

Check it out.


Comments (Archived):

  1. Matt A. Myers

    It’s a Pinterest of you!

    1. fredwilson

      that’s a good way of putting it

      1. Matt A. Myers

        Likely need to throw a TM in there if you’re going to use it as an official tagline ๐Ÿ˜‰

  2. Matt A. Myers

    Once upon the de-centralized web came the aggregation mouse.Aggregation and curation will become more and more important, and more and more valuable as the web de-centralizes, as core pieces for specialized systems and functions solidify and strengthen, grow – and takeover the lackluster and mostly failed attempts of generalized systems to compensate and temporarily fill the need of all groups, that as groups do have their own special needs and requirements due to their context.

  3. JimHirshfield

    Ooh, myYahoo for the social age.

    1. fredwilson

      it could be if it had a dashboard for everyone you want to follow



      2. paul berry

        thanks @fredwilson:disqus that dashboard is vital, we’re getting close now…

  4. Wells Baum

    Aggregation can only be achieved through simple design. Rebel Mouse is pulling from the Pinterest masonry design, making images scannable. I recently switched my blog to a more Pinterest styled Tumblr theme, I love it. It makes it so easy to see a diversity of content. I’d love to get the community’s feedback on the look and feel over the standard up and down scroll. Fred, would you ever consider this type of layout for the AVC blog?

    1. Cam MacRae

      That URL doesn’t work because you’ve accidentally included the bracket.

    2. fredwilson


  5. kidmercury

    this idea is huge, although i question the approach. aggregating fred is useful for people who want to hang out with fred. but i don’t see it working unless fred is there.i think it is pretty clear that the richest forms of hanging out with fred for people that are not in his inner circle is here on AVC. because fred invests the most of his public web self here, and because there are apps that facilitate meaningful engagement (movable type and disqus) that is where the community has naturally emerged. so, i think the aggregation needs to occur here, unless fred changes his behavior and devotes himself to rebelmouse. but would he, or others, really do that? probably not, because there is a much greater ownership element to your own standalone blog. there is also the issue of where community management can emerge best — and i think the more niche the better, which is another reason why i think community management will emerge best i think the aggregation needs to happen here. perhaps an opportunity for disqus or movable type.

    1. Cam MacRae

      You raise a very good point. Perhaps it needs to be pluggable.

      1. Shyam Subramanyan

        I agree. Content curation and aggregation as a service has more viability, but most new services are focused on creating destination sites because they want to build the next Facebook or Pinterest. We need services that take the SEO back to bloggers and publishers where it rightfully belongs.

        1. kidmercury


        2. William Mougayar

          That makes sense.

        3. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          1. Shyam Subramanyan

            I’ll say that the Facebook style content is not necessarily low value – it’s different value. It can be of high value if Facebook can figure out how to crack monetization of a more “private content” without spooking users

          2. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          3. ShanaC

            Why do you think it will look like that? Frankly, by the time Social Media as we know it gets out of early awkward adolescence period into less awkward adolescence period I expect another revolution in UX based on technologies like the Kinect.

          4. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          5. leigh

            i dunno. watching my son interact with his first ipad at 18months until now at 3.5 — technology becoming biology feels like a revolution to me.

          6. FAKE GRIMLOCK


      2. paul berry

        we’re building plugins ๐Ÿ™‚

    2. James Ferguson @kWIQly

      Interesting. If we view all of these social apps as simply nodes on a graph, there seems no difficulty in seeing each app as a “node-centric” view of all the other nodes, where each link has a personality, community or theme raison-d’etre.Certainly each node-specific view-port can emphasize or play down different aspects of accessible content from all other nodes.Hold on a minute – We could call these things “web-pages” and the relations between them “hyper-links”.Obviously the point I make is that these apps are more and more turning into a variety of meta-template engines, where the generic super-cedes the individual and homogeneity prevails.A wise individual noted that creativity is stimulated by constraint (Haiku verse, Sonnets, black and white photos) – I think there is a beauty in the constraint of a text only discussion – and it is why I like avc.

    3. fredwilson

      this is my hub, for sure



      1. Dale Allyn

        This is exactly what I felt. With this as Fred’s hub, this is the place to provide access to his other activities. But the tendency is to use plugins which are cluttered and high-noise feeds, and that sucks visually and mentally, so needs to be factored into the UI/UX.

        1. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          1. Dale Allyn

            Yep. Too often, the problem is not properly defined before the solution is designed.

      2. Shyam Subramanyan

        Agreed. Here’s what I’m doing at my startup – List-based content curation for bloggers and publishers through a plugin. The engagement stays on the blog and the content is portable – see here for an example –

      3. kidmercury

        i favor the integrated approach here, which is why i think there is such a huge opportunity in CMS creation. the CMS needs to be its own social graph and needs to pull everything else into further the development of this social graph. for instance, fred’s tweets/checkins/etc need to come in, and then we should all discuss each one. a million different widgets, not linked to any social graph, will lead to the fragmentation problems, similar to what we see with some mobile operating systems.

        1. paul berry

          i hate to be thought of as a CMS but at the same time it is important for the future of social publishing to be built ground up around the behaviors that have evolved

      4. ShanaC

        I’m not so sure. I don’t feel this strong need to follow Fred all the time for the food he eats (who says I have the same taste in food*) This blog is about internet thinking with brief breaks for other material. Other content may not be nearly as fun.*Actually, something I realized from the food post is that I do have the same taste in food. Point still stands

        1. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          1. William Mougayar

            So many tools to try, so few win the stickiness test.

          2. FAKE GRIMLOCK


    5. Luke Chamberlin

      Here’s a question for you: what if the blog owner was given the ability to curate Disqus posts behind the scenes, and bring the content they’d like to highlight to the top? Or feature certain comments? Good thing or bad thing for the community?

      1. kidmercury

        great thing, provided the blog owner wants to do that — perhaps there is a role for moderators, or some type of ranking mechanism in general. i do favor manual curation and think manual stuff in general is severely undervalued.



    6. andyidsinga

      you’re on to something addition …social media aggregation from a code standpoint is quite straight forward …so there will likely be a lot of these popping up that differentiate in ux …the more social versions of my yahoo, igoogle etc.

    7. paul berry

      thanks @kidmercury:disqus i think that there is a tremendous opportunity to bring out the communities behind threads and giving a platform that is easy to launch and grows organically

  6. Ronen Mendezitsky

    I don’t like the approach of having me give full access to my social accounts and learning in the end the service is asking me to wait for an invite when I have no clue of its time of arrival. I have been noticing this too much lately. AirTime did the same – “First give us your information, then wait and we’ll tell you when we’re ready to tell you what the product is”.I think this is a dangerous habit and I wouldn’t like to see it grow further. Right now, Apple’s extremely limiting behavior seems a lot more logical.

    1. kidmercury

      yeah i dislike it too, although i only gave them a twitter account and passed on giving the rest of the info.

    2. Matt A. Myers

      I’ve yet to encounter it. I didn’t try to log into RebelMouse because I suspected it though – since Fred said it was invite-only.I guess it’s a good way they can filter for who you are, and decide if they want you to have access to it or not early on? Not sure if that’s their main cause though..

      1. Ronen Mendezitsky

        I don’t have a problem giving access to my social networks to RebelMouse, I have a problem with the presentation. It goes through the whole process of asking you for access and only tells you at the end that it’s not yet available. I also have a problem with what AirTime did, which was basically the same. I don’t think it’s reasonable that people are inputing so much information to a service without even knowing what it is. If the people themselves can’t keep themselves from being exposed, someone else has to.

        1. Matt A. Myers

          Yeah, it’s dishonest. If they put a warning beforehand that the signing up / authorizing access was to signup for a request, then that would be fine.

    3. William Mougayar

      I side with their approach. When you gain access, you’ll see a full dashboard. Same outcome, no?

      1. Ronen Mendezitsky

        Ture, but I’m afraid for the future of this approach. Once more startups imitate this approach and not everyone can be trusted, people will probably keep on approving access since that is what people do, and they do it without thinking and often leave access alive even if they stop using a service. I obviously won’t blame the service giver for people being reckless, but I sure would rather not read about this exact problem a few months from now in the news.

  7. Cam MacRae

    In some respects I really like it, but this kind of aggregation is predicated on either a consistent persona across all properties, or not caring if alternate personas are merged. I’m not entirely comfortable with that, but perhaps most people are.

    1. kidmercury

      you can have multiple accounts with rebelmouse, so i think they are sort of accounting for that. i have two of most things (fb, twitter, etc) so i can have two rebelmouses (mice?).

      1. Cam MacRae

        You’re still aggregating your twitter and FB, you’d just be doing it twice: once for each of your rebelmouses, no?

        1. kidmercury

          i mean i have a twitter for my real name and a twitter for kid mercurya facebook for my real name and a facebook for kid mercuryi thus can have a kid mercury rebelmouse that pulls kid mercury twitter and fb, as well as a real name rebelmouse that pulls real name twitter and real name fbin this way, i can get the benefits of aggregation, while still preserving the benefits of the silo.

          1. Cam MacRae

            Understood. I’m thinking more of the the case where your twitter persona is kid mercury, your FB persona is kid thallium and never the two shall meet.

          2. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          3. falicon

            sadly, I find this hilarious.

          4. kidmercury

            i am a fan of beryllium. it makes the kid mercury list of miracle elements that could help us get out of the all the crises.

          5. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          6. JamesHRH

            I am with @falicon. Sadly, te amount of thought here makes me love this too much. You are a singularity pards.

          7. James Ferguson @kWIQly

            Whhoooa there – You mean kidmercury is not your real name – I feel betrayed ๐Ÿ˜‰

    2. fredwilson

      yes, great point

    3. paul berry

      i think even if you are twitter only you’ll find it adds value right away. because

    4. ShanaC

      As I’ve gotten older I realized that merging is more normal – it has allowed me to be more comfortable in my skin.

      1. Cam MacRae

        You’re on the road to self-actualisation.Online is another kettle of fish: it allows the freedom to behave in ways you would never dare IRL. Some of that seems to be bleeding around the edges into social and moral norms, but for the most part it’s only possible right here.

        1. ShanaC

          ๐Ÿ™‚ I realized recently that I am healthier than I have ever been in my life, that I am almost out of the awkward duckling stage, and that I am working on very powerful ideas that seem to be just before thier tipping point. I’m hoping the next 6-12 months will get me where I want to go. I’m glad I sound like things are getting better then.I’ve found that being a bit more to the edge with my behavior online actually helped that integration process. Not for everyone, but the ability to test and decide is extremely helpful towards reaching self-actualization.

  8. Shaun Dakin

    Friend feed 2?

    1. William Mougayar

      More beautifully done. It reminded me of Twylah, but done much better.

      1. awaldstein

        Yes, it does.Twylah’s limitation is a single stream focus. Great idea but segmenting rather than aggregating.

        1. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          1. awaldstein

            @twitter-18486852:disqus is on this string. He should chime in.

          2. Eric Kim

            Thanks GRIMLOCK and Arnold.The implicit goal in creating and curating content is to engage your audience, and through that engagement, form a deeper relationship (like Fred does here in the AVC community).What Twylah aims to achieve is to help publishers deepen that engagement with their audience, to broaden their audience (beyond the world of Twitter users), and to translate that engagement into tangible user actions (e.g. email opt-ins and micro-transactions).Rebelmouse is a very cool visualization, with a very different purpose to what we are doing at Twylah. Is is much more akin to Memolane, which also provides a cool visual timeline aggregation.Twylah aims to make sense out of your Twitter stream, so that it is consumable by a much larger audience than just Twitter users (only 15% of the US population is actively on Twitter). It aggregates your posts by topic, and presents them visually within the context of specific topics. Users can quickly get an overview of what you talk about, and drill down on the the things they care about the most, rather than having to sift through all of your content.Here is GRIMLOCK’s Twylah page, for example:…Also, mine (if you want to see who I am and what I care about):

          3. Guest

            I guess my post got lost.I’ve had a question poping up in my head recently. I’ll apply it here.What does your Twylah page do for me?

          4. Eric Kim

            There’s a couple of ways of answering that, depending on how I read your question:1) your Twylah page allows you to broaden your audience way beyond Twitter: your content is now presented in a familiar metaphor (a Web 1.0 website) that everyone can understand, including your grandmother, and your Twitter content is now findable/discoverable where people are actually looking for info, when they are looking for it – on Google/Bing/Yahoo. So you get more viewers to engage more deeply with your content, rather than your tweets disappearing after an hour2) you have the ability to host your Twylah page on your domain, so that now you get the full benefits of this on your URLHope that’s what you were looking for? Let me know if I didn’t answer your question…

          5. Guest

            Great answer, I think it answers the question “What does Twylah do for me.”I was wanting to know what *your Twylah page* does for me.

          6. Eric Kim

            Oh, got it. My Twylah page helps you get to know me (and what I care about and my expertise) very quickly, at a glance. Also, if you’re into what I’m interested in (startups, content marketing, social media), it’s a great resource chock-full of interesting content.For example, here is Robert Scoble’s page: and Fred Wilson’s:…At a glance, you can see what’s top of mind for them right now, and you can drill down on any of those things if they are part of your interests.

          7. awaldstein

            Thanks Eric!

          8. LE

            Twlah does a much better job of addressing the issues of what I raised in my “design of rebel” comment above.Here is Scoble’s twlah page:…Notice how much easier it is to locate something that you find interesting. Even has top nav bar.By the way @kabaim:disqus even though you have the typo “” you also should get “” as well. (There are several others I would have suggested but they are already taken..)

          9. Eric Kim

            Thanks LE! Yes – showing a strong info trail/scent is very important for getting users what they want quickly.Thx for the tip – just bought

          10. William Mougayar

            I like the pop-up at the footer in Twylah (what do you call that?). ME GRIMLOCK MAKE POSTERS. Classic!! Can the user select their “message”? Maybe you should start charging something. See RebelMouse “pricing”:

          11. Eric Kim

            Hi William – yes, we have plans to roll out a premium service soon where users can post their own “call to action”, and generate email opt-ins.As of right now, we offer the custom domain feature to our users for free – you can host your Twylah page on your domain, and fully benefit from the built-in SEO that makes your content findable through search engines.

          12. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          13. ShanaC

            I really have just one question:Why is this important? What pain is this solving for me?

          14. Eric Kim

            Hi Shana! Not sure these are pain points for you, but the 2 key aspects we aim to address are that 1) tweets have an effective life of only one hour, and 2) people outside of the Twitter ecosystem (85% of the population) have no clue how to understand and interact with the content you put out on Twitter.We address both of these issues, by providing your tweets a permanent, organized home, where your content (and the content your curate) is presented in a way that even my 73-year-old mother can understand and navigate. On top of that, we make your content findable on search, effectively expanding your audience to the entire population, not just the 15% that are on Twitter.If your goal on Twitter is to engage others, Twylah provides you a mechanism by which you can significantly deepen that engagement, with a much larger audience.

          15. LE

            “On top of that, we make your content findable on search”Super important issue.You should make this point on your homepage prominently. I see it’s in your faq. But since your home page says “Get noticed now” and speaks about “brings your brand message into focus” I would definitely add “Get noticed by Search and boost your SEO” or similar.By the way why no twylah page for you in the “About”?

          16. Eric Kim

            Thanks LE for the feedback – much appreciated! We’ll get links/widgets of team’s Twylah pages on our About page.

          17. Guest

            ShanaC’s question is what I was getting at below.

          18. Eric Kim

            Thanks GRIMLOCK and Arnold.The implicit goal in creating and curating content is to engage your audience, and through that engagement, form a deeper relationship (like Fred does here in the AVC community). What Twylah aims to achieve is to help publishers deepen that engagement with their audience, to broaden their audience (beyond the world of Twitter users), and to translate that engagement into tangible user actions (e.g. email opt-ins and micro-transactions).Rebelmouse is a very cool visualization, with a very different purpose to what we are doing at Twylah. Is is much more akin to Memolane, which also provides a cool visual timeline aggregation.Twylah aims to make sense out of your Twitter stream, so that it is consumable by a much larger audience than just Twitter users (only 15% of the US population is actively on Twitter). It aggregates your posts by topic, and presents them visually within the context of specific topics. Users can quickly get an overview of what you talk about, and drill down on the the things they care about the most, rather than having to sift through all of your content.Here is GRIMLOCK’s Twylah page, for example:…Also, mine (if you want to see who I am and what I care about):

          19. Shyam Subramanyan

            I hope so – just met the founders last week in San Francisco at an event

          20. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          21. ShanaC

            why do I need a pretty homepage anyway?

          22. LE

            “pretty homepage anyway” … “back in the dating world”One of the things that I really liked about online dating [1] was that I could read a person’s profile and see so many things about them. Then I could decide if I had any interest or not. Sometimes the things that I read made me more interested and sometimes less interested. Rarely was I neutral. Girls that were attractive could become less attractive or more attractive depending on what I read. To me reading details about a person was a highly efficient way of sorting the vast amount of women that were available online.To me if you are looking to date, do business, make friends, socialize, or show off, as only a few examples you need a pretty homepage to advertise yourself.As with anything you have to weigh the gains with the losses. None of the things I listed I am looking to do (what I do in business requires me to be more stealthy) so I don’t need a homepage. On the other hand you are young and could benefit greatly.Gains with the losses: Politicians walk in stupid boring parades on weekends when the rest of us may be down the shore. They do that because it helps them achieve something they want so what is negative to me is positive to them. I don’t need votes. On the other hand if I could make money at the parade I’d want to be there as well.[1] I met someone this way and we are married now. Never would have happened without jdate.

          23. Ben Apple

            I’d say that it can reveal a pretty accurate picture of people as well. Pictures posted by that person and their friends, blog posts, music tastes, what their reading, you can really get a sense of who someone is- pretty cool!

      2. Dave Pinsen

        Looks nice. Looks to me like the front page of a newspaper.

      3. Sebastian Wain

        I think it is more beautiful because it is done on 2012. Friendfeed excelled on search.The issue with these sites is that they convert in ghost cities pretty soon. Everyone adds a profile but the engagement is pretty low.

        1. paul berry

          thank you @srwain:disqus (i know i’m replying 13 days later, apologies). very excited about the concepts we have for consumption and publishing tied together which is very different from profile sites

          1. Sebastian Wain

            Nice to know. In the case of Friendfeed some people (me too) engaged in discussions there but others only published their feeds and almost never returned.

    2. Ben Apple

      Friend Stalk!

      1. ShanaC

        Truer than I would like to admit. I’m back in the dating world for the first time in a bit. I wonder how smart it is for me to be so revealing on the web. Granted, this is with the caveat that I just realized that web stalking in no way reveals what makes me blush, or that I often ignore complements, ect.

        1. LE

          “I wonder how smart it is for me to be so revealing on the web.”You’re the product so it makes sense for you, the product, to have as much exposure as possible to make a sale. Unless I am misunderstanding what you mean by “so revealing on the web”.

  9. Shyam Subramanyan

    Great, now I can stalk everyone without leaving the comfort of one app ;)Seriously speaking though, any auto generated page gets boring after a while.

    1. fredwilson

      i agree. they need to solve that problem somehow.

      1. LE

        @disqus the threading makes it impossible to see what Fred thinks needs to be solved. Doesn’t seem to make any sense given what I think he is replying to.A rollover that pops up the parent comment would be helpful. Or some kind of color indent.

        1. Guest

          All those things have been addressed in forum systems. No real re-think needed just a bit of code.



      1. Shyam Subramanyan

        build by hand(s) with their crowd (community), methinks

        1. Matt A. Myers

          How do you mean?

          1. Shyam Subramanyan

            For example, while @fredwilson:disqus sets the agenda, the most valuable content on this page is this discussion, but currently the engagement is limited to this thread and a time-period (two days max?). I believe crowd engagement and content creation/curation will move INTO the post as well in a variety of forms to produce and evolve content over longer periods of time

          2. falicon

            I’m finding that the majority of discussions around avc are hyper-active for about 3 days actually…but there are threads that continue to get action for weeks (and occasionally months) out…just depends on the topic, how/when people find it (*wink*), and if the thread is still open for participation…

          3. Shyam Subramanyan

            @falicon:disqus engagement via discussion is engagement STILL IN ADOLESCENT FORM as @FakeGrimlock:disqus might put it. The content is of use when people walk in but tough to understand/use/spread programmatically. I think engagement can be more structured producing content that can be more easily understood than a discussion but much richer than a Facebook Like. That sort of engagement can transcend time and leveraged by programs

          4. falicon

            I am a big fan of structure behind the scenes (so programs can take advantage of it) but free form in the front (so users can absorb and interact with it however they see fit)…it’s a fine line that continues to slowly evolve for sure…

          5. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          6. falicon

            I suspect you are right…as usual.

          7. LE

            @falicon:disqus @FakeGrimlock:disqus would be nice if a checkbox appeared next to @disqus comments so you could mark what you have read and quickly scan and view new comments later (checked comments could change color or get dimmed enough to read but also to fly by.)Dimming or color change is key to helping you see the context of the new comments or replies.

          8. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          9. Guest

            But then you’re spending money to kinda’ reinvent the wheel.

          10. LE

            How so?

          11. Guest

            Well, I think, these problems have been solved in the past. Not the technical issues, but the user issues. So for example, finding a new way to better thread display is like reinventing the wheel. Even though the code and UI will look different because they’ll fit Disqus.

          12. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          13. Guest

            I was thinking about that. You’re probably right. A forum with “magnified display” of thhe new thread post would really fit the bill.

          14. Guest

            You’re time focused.I’m event focused. I think threads linger in someone’s active queue until they are displaced by other events (like adding a new topic).Years ago I went into a company that used a timer to “check for” new data. The system was crashing so much they had a guy on-call to come in and reboot stuff. I re-worked the system to use events that triggered when new data arrived, it fixed the problems.

          15. Matt A. Myers

            That makes me think that gap is filled by us, humans, where we curate and then be creative with what we’ve gathered? We use our creative mind to further ideas which then we hopefully execute in some way – whether it’s writing about the furthered theories or creating something functional with them.

      2. ShanaC

        Christ Dixon: all good things start as toys.

  10. William Mougayar

    WordPress, Pinterest and Facebook got drunk one night and had a three-some…

    1. Luke Chamberlin

      I don’t think that’s how reproduction works…

      1. panterosa,

        you’d be surprised…



    2. paul berry

      social publishing ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Dale Allyn

    It’s actually a good concept for those who wish to consume a fire hose like that. It’s interesting to see a mashup overview of a person’s web life. But for me, once I see the whole thing, I found myself in a deluge and looking for the exit. It feels like noise pretty fast to me. (I don’t intend to be negative or critical, just sharing my impression as feedback.)IMO there needs to be a “calmer” view that allows a visitor to drill down if desired. Something to squelch the noise a bit if desired.

    1. William Mougayar

      It felt like it amplified the firehouse of social media.

      1. Dale Allyn

        Yes, it very much feels like that.It’s not something I would visit other than for the use of an overview of a person. At least that’s my feeling now. I can envision a presentation option that would change that, at least for me, and at least for a while. Too many projects are not truly sensitive to users, and underestimate the effects of fatigue.(edit: gobbledegook sentence fixed)

    2. Eric Kim

      Do you mean something like this:… ? Organizes tweets by topics and allows viewers to drill down on any topic. Also provides SEO for users’ Twitter content (which users can host on their domain). Here is Fred’s as well:

      1. awaldstein

        Hi EricGlad you showed up for this discussion.

      2. Dale Allyn

        No, not really. At least not for the first layer. What I refer to is something like: I’ve arrive on Fred’s profile page; now what do I want to explore about his online world? Then I’d like to choose to see his tweets, or photos, or music layers. The current method feels like I arrive at Fred’s front door and he greets me with a bucket of water in my face. I can take it, I just don’t want to. ;)Edit to add: A “sampler” from each service in the mashup could be presented, but pushing the entire thing at once is not enjoyable to consume for me.



        1. Eric Kim

          Thanks GRIMLOCK – looking forward to it.

      4. LE

        As I’ve mentioned I really like your site and the way it’s layed out. But you need a different name. First it’s to tied into twitter and second it’s to hard to even remember how to spell it correctly. Several possible phonetic variations.Same reason it’s easier to remember a phone number ending in 7700 or even 6850 rather than 8631. “twy” doesn’t match known patterns and has to be remembered as three letters.7700 two chunks. 6850 two chunks. facebook two chunks. “new york times” three chunks. All easy chunks to remember most importantly. Same with “fake grim lock” and “union square ventures”.You have “” (and as I’ve suggested you should also get “”)At the very least if you don’t want to rebrand I’d go with “twi” as the main spelling. “twi” matches at least some real word starts but “twy” matches none.

        1. Eric Kim

          Thanks LE – appreciate the feedback.

      5. Dale Allyn

        In case I was opaque in my previous reply, I do think that Twylah is presenting the content in a more digestible form than is RebelMouse. Visiting your example of Fred’s Twylah page left me a bit unsatisfied, partly because of some of the section headings there. Scoble’s was more meaningful to me. I’m not a Twylah user, so my impression was that of an “outsider”. And to be clear, I’m not aware of the options there.I do feel that there is an opportunity for a “foyer layer” (especially for RebelMouse) without it degrading to a useless splash screen.Frankly, based on many conversations with people who don’t live for the social web, I think it’s an error to assume that every visitor knows what each service represents. For example, I know a lot of people who have no idea what Tumblr is. Or Soundcloud. Perhaps these headings are all designed by each user, but there are missing connections for certain visitors. Good UX takes into account that some visitors will not fully aware of every new and hip service on the Web. There are ways to provide comfort to such visitors if there is a desire to do so. A comfortable visitor is a sticky visitor. ๐Ÿ˜‰

        1. Eric Kim

          I hear you Dale – totally agree with your viewpoint on creating comfort for visitors – I’m of the school of thought of ‘don’t make me think’, where user interactions should be intuitive and obvious, and not leave the users with questions about what something means or does. That said, there’s always room for improvement, and I appreciate your feedback.In the case of Fred’s Twylah page, SoundCloud and Tumblr are headings because he explicitly talks about these service in his tweets (his tweets are about those services), and I imagine his audience want to know about the products/services he talks about. There is however a facility for users to pin top topics to the top of the page, and to hide unwanted topics, to better craft the image they want to project.If you’re interested, here are some more pages:…Again, really appreciate your feedback – would love to hear more.

          1. Dale Allyn

            Thanks, Eric. I’m, likewise, of the “don’t make me think” school and feel very strongly about consideration of all types of users/visitors. We agree in our goals on this.I didn’t intend to pick on Fred’s Twylah page, it’s just one that you presented, so I reacted to it. For me, the Tumblr and Soundcloud sections were obvious. I didn’t feel that the “Stage” and “Search” sections were intuitive, though I can figure such things out. It’s just that if I’m asked, I’ll usually try to give feedback, and I often approach the page as if I were a novice who may also be a bit intimidated by a new web environment. It’s always a challenge, when we’re so close to our projects and intimately familiar with features and intentions, to put ourselves in the shoes of not only the new user, but also the new visitor who may also be new to some popular services on the Web.I appreciate your desire to deliver an intuitive experience to your users.

          2. Eric Kim

            Thanks so much Dale – your feedback is very much appreciated. Got me thinking about it some more…Please do let me know if you have any other observations or feedback – it’s been very helpful and insightful.Hope you have a great weekend!

          3. Dale Allyn

            Nice connecting with you, Eric. Have a great weekend, too!

  12. Cam MacRae

    More disqus weirdness: in yesterday’s and today’s thread @fredwilson:disqus ‘s comments appear and then disappear, pruning threads as they go.

    1. Dale Allyn

      Yes, all kinds of weirdness today. Refreshing the page makes it worse. @wmoug:disqus comments disappeared, too. Others come and go.

      1. fredwilson

        Reporting this to disqus

        1. Tyler Hayes

          Thanks @fredwilson:disqus. We’re looking into this.I also want to make sure everyone also feels comfortable hollering our way too.@daleallyn:disqus @twitter-41899343:disqus @falicon:disqus @cammacrae:disqus we’re always around at for when short burst chat suffices and when the situation needs a bit more fleshing out with details (like screenshots).Ideally there shouldn’t be a reason to need to reach out to us in the first place, I realize. But when there is we really appreciate hearing about issues directly as early as possible so we can determine whether or not the culprit is on our end somewhere and then knock it out as quickly as possible. That said, of course we’ll always still be paying attention here ๐Ÿ™‚

    2. Luke Chamberlin

      Me too.

    3. falicon

      I especially experience this when checking from the web vs. iphone vs. ipad…stuff will be there for one version, gone for the other, then swapped the next time I try either…very odd as I don’t seem to notice an actual pattern to it yet…

    4. LE

      Might as well add to the disqus discussion:1) My first comment using Firefox13 (F13) (and also 12) normally works. But my second comment posts but appears to not disappear (so I have to check with another browser session). This has been going on for over a week at least.2) Still no way to upload photos which was in the old disqus3) Edit box is only 2 lines on F13.4) Clicking on someones avatar takes you off the discussion and you loose your place going back to the home page if you back browser5) disqus comments almost never come up for me on iphone (3s). This is a problem since I always check first while waiting in line for my coffee.

  13. Dan Goldin

    The space is definitely heating up – we’re working on something similar at Glossi ( ) but placing a lot more emphasis on displaying the content cleanly.Edited – to add a bit more here we’re trying to take control of the design more and focus and make sure everyone’s content looks good. Even if all they connect is a Twitter account. Design’s hard and you don’t want to run into the MySpace issue.

    1. Matt A. Myers

      FYI, URL has ) included in it ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. Dan Goldin

        Thanks! Just fixed it.

  14. Irving Fain

    Classic photo! Any chance that’s Jordy in the front row?

    1. Dale Allyn

    2. fredwilson

      yes, he was wearing a yellow polo shirt and yellow sneakers. and blue jeans. i accused him of being an oregon ducks fan.

      1. Irving Fain

        So great…and he still has it!

  15. awaldstein

    On one hand it drags me in cause it’s very well designed. On the other I’m wondering about any new ‘destination’ that further fragments by aggregating stuff from everywhere else and creates yet another new virtual space.I’m with @kidmercury:disqus on this I think.We need connectors to our centers which is our own URLs.

    1. @MDEredita

      Agreed on design. Really nice. Still think the most personally meaningful place of aggregation remains email. Trusted sources to trusted sources with some reliable practices in place. We have been playing with this idea at with some success. It is interesting to see just how much happens there in this regard.

      1. awaldstein

        Agree about email. But one-2-one while a personal connector isn’t social from a network perspective nor the same in intent.We email to communicate specifically. We participate in social nets and communities like this one to learn, share, network and of course, just play.

        1. Matt A. Myers

          Play and fun, a part of the festival that follows you wherever you go.

        2. @MDEredita

          We thought the same until users kept pointing us back to email. It’s very flexible and seems to be playing both roles.

          1. awaldstein

            Huge believer and practitioner of email.It’s just not a network in my eyes.Glad to be proven incorrect and have my horizon’s lifted of course.

        3. paul berry

          i can’t imagine why email isn’t a vital social network. we’re going to work on integrating in clever ways that you hopefully find really useful, more to come on that probably as we reach fall this year

          1. awaldstein

            When you’re ready, I’m interested.Good luck with this.

      2. ShanaC

        How do you think this will play out as Millenials age – I’m message agnostic. I prefer email compared to some friends, but not enough to say that it my only source of making trusted connections.

      3. paul berry

        thanks for these comments @7deb822d647886226f34f197f88b24fd:disqus !

    2. panterosa,

      @awaldstein:disqus If I have another place to go which is mosaic of other places then I might melt. I agree one’s own URL space is key. The only use of new spaces is listing on other platform and be a joiner of new service and with the early adopters.Re URL’s, I already have so many my head spins. Not sure I’ve even sent you those links, perhaps not to make your head spin.At center here is “Identity Maintenance”, and fragmentation or centralization thereof. I make a wide array of things under different names, so I am fragmented. Other people making array of things can centralize better than I can.At the end of the day, I don’t want maintaining my identity to occlude the time to make my work and be myself. There is risk here in chasing outwards all leads to new connections and engagement on multiple platforms which can eclipse the signal and focus on owns own content/message/product.Back to Signal v. Noise, 2012. The jockeying for position on different platforms as early user is feeding a lot of noise.

      1. William Mougayar

        Yes, signal vs. noise is key. I’m a big fan of signal over noise ๐Ÿ™‚

    3. paul berry

      we want you to have your own url

  16. Justin Koufopoulos

    One interface to rule them all?

    1. Guest

      And in the spec bind them?

      1. Matt A. Myers

        Really? Who LOLs at something like that? I did.

        1. Guest

          I don’t know. I’m just glad that I’m not the only one.

          1. Matt A. Myers

            We can feel shame, together.

    2. Matt A. Myers


    3. ShanaC

      One interface to bind them.



  17. Guest

    A natural progression for folks to follow. Play with all the gadgets… Get lazy… Move to a unified site that brings all gadgets to one place?Fred, your post about mobile that sparked my question of what’s next relates to this. A single location for all displayed activity may be the next “thing”? I recently saw a post on Brad Felds blog with a link about visual development using widgets (components). That would be a nice way to build single location displays.eMOS (my web based medical solution system) uses such an approach in its core. Of course that’s a normal thing to do when looking for patterns of reuse during system design. Candidate aggregate objects are also easy to pick out when designing a heirarchy.

    1. Matt A. Myers

      Agreed, it’s a natural progression – though it’s still not done properly, anywhere.

      1. Guest

        Correct. But it takes a wholely different approach to do it properly. Cloud thinking should move us closer.

        1. Matt A. Myers

          It should make it easier, though not sure you can reach the conclusions by looking at what I assume you mean by cloud thinking. Can you elaborate on that?

          1. Guest

            Looking at the web as one big cloud causes some new ways of thinking and sharing for system developers. I figure the sharing should bring about the changes we’re discussing. Although people have been moving in that direction for some time, I think the cloud will bring about the “Ah!” for more.

          2. Matt A. Myers

            Gotcha. Visual learners.

      2. Luke Chamberlin

        The alarm clock radio?

        1. Matt A. Myers

          So confused.

          1. Luke Chamberlin

            An example of a unified gadget that works. But most mash-ups are not as successful.

          2. Matt A. Myers

            Oh. Gotcha. Brilliant. ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. Luke Chamberlin

    I think these aggregators fail for the same reasons that people want different social graphs in the first place.They have Twitter information, but it’s not as easy to skim through as Twitter.They have photos from Pinterest and Instagram, but they clutter the visual interface with text and white space.They have Foursquare information, but it’s too ancillary to Foursquare’s mobile experience to replace that service.And so on.Aggregators are good at everything and better at nothing.Another factor is design. This is a nicer design than I’ve seen, but the top networks lead the way in design, now more than ever. If you’re competing with the new Foursquare app on design terms, you’ve got to be really really good.This did catch my eye however:…You mean they aren’t giving this away for free? What is the world coming to!?

    1. Dale Allyn

      Love it! Yes, charge me, please! Give me something of value and take my money in exchange. What a concept. ;)(although I’m not saying that RebelMouse is something that I would value… yet.)

    2. kidmercury

      but what about the fredgraph? that’s what i really want and that’s completely lacking.

  19. Patrick Keane

    I like it. The velocity of posts makes it challenging to observe and reference the reactions to even your own posts. Feels to me like a reaggregation of self. You get a clean presentation of your activity. I like a lot too.

  20. paul berry

    hi guys I’m writing from a beach camping trip with our 3 kids and a never ending battery challenge. so apologies for the brevity on my side. i wanted to day that i feel rebelmouse is very much just at the starting line and with a tremendously talented and also scrappy team :)i hope that my roadmap for rebelmouse has gone from semi stealth to fairly clear the team here is so proud of the many use cases that were found in just the first two days of life. your comments and thoughts on avc are important to me and to us

    1. ShanaC

      The comments will be hear when you get back – go enjoy your family, the beach, and the vacation!

      1. paul berry

        btw thanks @ShanaC:disqus has been a couple crazy weeks of launch and it was a great time with the family. your comments on this avc thread were really great to read, very appreciate you sharing your angle/thoughts

    2. William Mougayar

      Paul – Best wishes and congrats on getting RebelMouse out. AVC is a wonderful community for testing ideas and getting feedback. If you can figure out user stickiness, delivered value and business model eventually, it will all be alright.

      1. paul berry

        sorry for such a late reply @wmoug:disqus but thanks and totally agree, we’re working like mad on those 3 things ๐Ÿ™‚

    3. giffc

      Paul, glad to see someone working on this seriously. We built something along these lines as a fun weekend project (you can see a version at, and I wanted to see something like this go to the next level. I don’t just want something to aggregate – I want my aggregator to be my backup solution in case a social startup gets shut down. I don’t want to lose my lifelog info.

      1. paul berry

        thanks @giffc:disqus sounds like really great stuff your working on

  21. LE

    I’ve scanned the comments below so let me go out on a limb and say I disagree and think the design sucks because the design is being done by average users who will not have the necessary design skills to work with what rebel has given them.Edit: See a typical page as an example of something that works.Here’s why. There is no flow with the way your eye sees a page. It’s all determined by the end user adding ingredients (remember 1995 web pages, myspace pages etc.) so you don’t know where to focus. It takes to much work to scan and find what you find interesting. Putting so much different information on a page is not easy requires design skills in layout and shouldn’t be done with columns as presented. It’s like “which way should my eye go?” And even large organizations with dedicated design people find doing this well a challenge. But at least those pages you visit every day so you get used to where you need to look and the lay of the land.And with respect to other social sites you get used to the site and how it’s layed out.So if you go to one person’s linkedin page or someone’s facebook page it doesn’t take any more effort to scan a new person’s linkedin page. You already know their education is toward the bottom and their latest job is at the top.Everything is neat clean and precise in your mind. That’s important. Here’s it’s a mess although “to be sure” maybe younger people used to dealing with distractions will have an easier time with this type of setup.On the web eyeball behavior has been studied by looking at heatmaps. Back in the day with respect to printed pieces we would do this by handing someone a printed piece and watching where their eyes went and their reaction (grabbing the piece before they had a chance to fully read to see if they got the point of the mailer or advertisement.)Here’s something I just dug up (and didn’t read yet) that seems to address the points I have made. As only one example take a look at “how do users think”.http://uxdesign.smashingmag

    1. Dale Allyn

      Larry: I remember that Smashing Magazine post well. There are valid points included there. I wish that more applications took the principles into consideration (together with other sensitivities of UX).

    2. andyidsinga

      awesome comment LE ..thanks for sharing link too

    3. ShanaC

      I think we still need to find balance between user expression and other users understanding user expression. it has been a challenge since the beginning of time….

    4. Guest

      If a service is going to give the general public the opportunity to create their own websites you’re gonna’ have those issues. Most people aren’t experienced in professional website, software, and user interface design concepts.

    5. Pete Griffiths

      Think myspace. ๐Ÿ™‚

    6. bernardlunn

      Every time I show a site to my favorite design guru – who just happens to be my wife – and if it sucks it is usually “where does my eye go” as the problem.

  22. Jeff Jenkins

    I can see why I might like to have a page like this about me, but since I like how fragmentation breaks things nicely by context/topic/noise level I don’t know what I would use it for. If I was going to have an aggregation I think I’d want it to be on my website, not on an external site.

  23. andyidsinga

    one of the problems with agregation that is starts to feel like a shopping mall ..great to get in and out quick ..but lacking character and hang out worthiness ..too sterile

  24. Alex Capecelatro

    I know it’s just a detail, but it drives me crazy that their landing page isn’t centered. Attention to detail goes a long way in my book…

  25. Dave Pinsen

    Interesting idea, but not a great name. I wonder if there is a business that buys and resells the names and associated branding of failed start-ups.

  26. PaulBear

    Aggregating and presenting feeds aesthetically done. I hope they do well.But stuff like this frankly doesn’t excite me. I have social feature fatigue. I want to see real innovation like these kids are doing (see laura deming and taylor wilson).

    1. kidmercury

      that taylor kid is amazing. my new hero.

      1. PaulBear

        He blows my mind. I can’t believe he built a fully functional nuclear reactor at the age of 14 all on his own. He talks about it as if he just built a lego model.

  27. Ben Apple

    Cool! Do you guys think this could be the next big space? A couple years ago, the first thing I’d do is get on FB to see what my friends were doing. So now, with all the fragmentation of social media, it would be ideal to have one check in point to see what my friends are doing across all channels.

  28. Geoff

    I love the daily updates from

  29. Guest

    I am sitting here listening to “Words” by the Bee Gees via a turntable, tube amps (3), and a pair of pretty odd British speakers.The imagery is so precise that I can close my eyes and pinpoint exactly where every microphone was placed on the sound stage; its as if they are actually performing in my sunroom.Fragmentation? Aggregation? I cannot help but ask “Why?”Do we really believe we are “brands?” I mean since tagging along with the AVC community I have started blogging, tweeting, tumbling, pinning and I have added accounts with Twylah, Engagio, Disqus, and now Rebelmouse (I also know that I missed quite a few) but I am not a “brand.” I don’t sell things to companies and I have no services to offer anyone; if I comment on a blog or communicate with someone within a community it is as an individual with nothing to offer and nothing to gain.Its raw and its honest; its emotional and its real…..including singing off key and the drummer who missed three beats….oh, that’s the Bee Gees not me…I just cannot help but think “law of diminishing returns” when I continue to read what is new and exciting in the social media world…at what point does 1% of 1% or 10% of 10% get you to “not worth it?” Obviously a few people can benefit from aggregation; some people like Fred can curate a following for what he thinks, for what he is doing, for where he eats, and what he is listening to….but that would put him in the 1% of 1% of 1%…..At some point the issue is no longer “signal to noise” but rather than “signals become noise”I can’t help but think that at some point we will find that writing and or receiving a handwritten letter or card will be considered “…the future…”

    1. ShanaC

      This comment is way underrated. I do think we are hitting a point where we’re getting diminishing returns for normal kinds of social media. I think in order to push value, we’re going to have to tackle other sorts of issues in a social way (like medicine), because right now there isn’t enough value for me to have this many ways to connect with zillions of people. I feel overwhelmed instead.

      1. Michael A D'Eredita

        Yep. I agree. We are doing our best to preserve what we believe is the last source of personally meaningful signal on the internet. eMail. ( It has been preserved for decades now, but the volume of noise of what is described above is simply becoming a threat in our eyes (not an opportunity to created yet another source of “signal” as used above).I think your point about pushing value is also spot on. The “look at me” value proposition is simply … well, simplistic. Being able to help people rise above the noise (or abundance of signal) will have value to those who want to get noticed, but the bigger problems to tackle are not simple, suggesting the solutions to them will require more elegance than aggregation can provide. I am guessing that many of these problems–while, no doubt, being informed by public forums–are still being addressed through more trusted channels. Preserving those will–in our minds–help to preserve the fundamental value of the internet.

      2. JLM

        .All of this will converge in much the same way that hardware has converged into a limited number of devices that do EVERYTHING that you can imagine.Software/internet will do the same thing.It is happening right now..

        1. Ben Apple

          I disagree about the convergence of everything. Seems like we go through cycles- companies will try to converge many features in one product- but ultimately, a company will diverge and do one thing really well.I’m a believer in divergence and simplicity- twitter, soundcloud, flickr- share what you’re doing, share sound, share pictures- simple! I don’t think these sites will be eliminated by one big mass producer of everything. No company can do EVERYTHING successfully.Maybe RebelMouse or some other service will be the place where we check in and see aggregated content, but no single company will be able to replace all of those services that we use.So we better get used to signing up for all of those new services and products, because thats just the way its going to be.And the general population is NOT trying out all of these services. Its the people on this site that are creating new services and content, or testing it out, and the rest of the population uses only those services that have been worthy of their time through our trial and error. So while it may seem painful for us to sift through everything thats coming out, most people don’t bother with it. They wait for us to tell them what’s cool.

          1. Dave W Baldwin

            The missing ingredient will change that landscape and does deliver a convergence. You are right that end run must follow the simplicity, but that simplicity/efficiency will be due to something higher tech.

          2. JLM

            @benapple:disqusI think you are only observing that the methodology of convergence may be complicated. Or a bit murky just now.I was not suggesting that the result of convergence would be a single platform or company but clearly had indicated that hardware as an example has, in fact, converged into a “,,,limited number of devices that do EVERYTHING…”.The competition created by multiple suppliers is great for the consumer. This is exactly what created Android — the unwillingness to surrender the whole world to Apple. It has made both offerings more powerful and better.Aggregation is convergence writ large.Whether this convergence is initially in the form of aggregators or RSS feeds or other means is not the point, but rather that you and I will be able to go to fewer locations to get all the stuff we want and that over time entrepreneurs and developers will continue to add features.The other side of the mirror is that powerful platforms such as FB will not allow a single entity to steal their secret sauce — Instagram — and will exercise their market share, financial strength and vision to ensure that their huge number of platform community members do not just wander off.Ultimately the value is in the size of the community.This is classic CTA v LTV thinking.What you and I personally believe in is of no particular consequence to the 900MM folks already on Twitter and if you or I personally decide to wander off the community game map, be prepared to be lonely.I agree with you completely that there is now an Internet Illuminati which is on the bleeding edge while the rest of the world cautiously waits to be lead to the Holy Grail. This has always been true of the cycle of innovation.I must admit to being completely entranced and intrigued with the multitude of great sites being developed. I can’t keep up with them and discover a new one every day.This is a period of huge innovation. A great time to be alive..

          3. paul berry

            @benapple:disqus sorry for replying so many days late, but i agree with your vision here. RebelMouse’s pact with the users is to help them be better on the networks that matter most and to make sense in one place when someone is curious who they are and what they are thinking about and doing

          4. Ben Apple

            True, having said all that, RebelMouse looks great and I’m excited to use it!

      3. LE

        “tackle other sorts of issues in a social way (like medicine)”How would you do that? Are you talking about medical professional interacting with each other to keep on top of information or are you talking about end users interacting with each other about health issues?

        1. Guest

          The issue of medicine/healthcare is one that will involve ALL of the following: 1. The program/software must be one awesome claims processing program. 2. The program software must improve communication between patient, healthcare provider, insurer, and the bigger world (medical database) 3. It must be searchable, offer additional information and allow for referrals (based upon outcomes).The reality is any meaningful changes to healthcare/medicine require that the relationships between patient, doctors, and insurer have to fundamentally change and the priorities of each need to be re focused.Anything other than that is not worthwhile.

        2. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

          @domainregistry:disqusMedicine and healthcare has taken a different root … since it comes under insurance … the products/services are not about serving the patient (the actual customer) but the virtual customer (insurance).

      4. Guest

        Thank you Shana…My perspective is derived from my world; A middle sized city in the mid south region of the United States. Its what I refer to as “downstream.”I cannot help it but when I read stats like 89% of the folks we are friends with on Facebook we have met in person or that only 15% of Americans tweet or now this new study:…I can’t help but remember the mid 90’s in the tee shirt industry; it was all about new styles, new colors, and new treatments. I mean it was exciting times and very profitable. Everyone was jumping on every new idea that came along. Then someone came up with a way to treat cotton so that the shirt changed colors from body heat; what I called mood ring garments.Everyone jumped all over it except us. I mean if you just stop and think for 2 minutes you realize that the first part of your body to “heat up” is your underarms and thus the first part of the shirt to change colors would be the armpits!That is an example of when a trend becomes a fad…The returns on those tee shirts was over 75%!!! In three months successful companies were going bankrupt over that one absurd garment.We really are now at the point where we are no longer focused on connecting with more people but rather having more connections with the people we are already connected with and I cannot help but see it as absurd when I walk into a factory breakroom during lunch and everyone is huddled with their cellphones, surfing their text messages and checking in on whatever social media sites they belong to and the whole time they have people sitting right next to them that they could connect with.I can only imagine what a NYC subway looks like at rush hour.

        1. falicon

          In the subway you rarely have an internet connection…so it’s all people playing offline apps or reading on a digital device…but before digital devices, it was newspapers and books…the subway is a place where 90% of the people on it do their damndest to get through the ride without having to ever acknowledge that there are about a million other people right next to them…I am one of the few that still loves to ride the subway…because I love to people watch and see how various people interact (or how much effort they can put into avoiding interaction)…it’s fascinating to watch (and helps make a lengthy commute go very fast).

          1. Guest

            Never having lived in NYC and having never taken a subway in NYC when visiting all I have to reference is television and movies.I would be like you, watching everyone around me and studying the interaction; people are so fascinating!I love watching people in NYC walk the streets; I mean they never run into each other, its like they have radar or have developed a bat like sense of others in their way.I on the other hand am the proverbial tourist and am running into everyone or holding up others….

          2. falicon

            well to be fair, if you get on the right subway car at the right time (or is it the wrong car at the wrong time?)…this really does happen ->…Though I think they call it a ‘flash mob’ now ๐Ÿ˜‰

          3. Mark Essel

            I prefer watching people at parks, Central Park is awesome for people watching (while I’m walking around it)

          4. Guest

            Having traveled a lot between both NYC and LA the one fundamental difference between those two cities is that in LA there is no way to watch people….

          5. fredwilson

            i love to ride the subway too. just love it. i ride it as much as i can. and there is cell service coming to the subways. i get data back and forth on my L train commute every day.

          6. Mark Essel

            Ha, I’m the opposite of you and @falicon:disqus, I walk everywhere. Even in the rain. Worst case I take a taxi.

          7. bernardlunn

            i also love riding the subway but have a new resolution to stay off my iPhone screen. It is hard. I give in on the earbuds though. I tend to prefer real world to cyberworld

        2. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

          I think the “more connections with the people we are already connected with ” is what social media business is about and everyone (all these services) is trying grab that info from you (us including the 1% of the 1% )…. and assign, define, align sell-ables

    2. LE

      “Obviously a few people can benefit from aggregation”A classic problem in the tech world with respect to new products and services that has been discussed ad nauseam.But people invent what they can wrap their head around and the angel and VC money goes into things that the investors and VC’s can understand and relate to. What’s that effect where you put more credibility in something happening or that just happened? Oh yeah it’s the “Availability Heuristic”, right? And publicity on the blogs echos in a similar way. And so does traditional media. Hey, whatever happened to the almost daily news about the Avian bird flu? Hmm, I guess it’s not a problem anymore?Of course it’s not USV’s job to invest in something they don’t know about anymore than I am going to operate a business that I don’t know about.

    3. Tom Labus

      No mas!Enough.How many times can you slice the same piece of pie.

      1. Guest

        …you can slice and dice until an apple becomes applesauce.What is missing from all this discussion is that social media relies on “traction” as a way to gauge success but what would happen if one actually offered a product to engage with each other on the net that cost a subscription fee?

      2. Carl Rahn Griffith


    4. bernardlunn

      great comment that totally resonates with me. Friedman’s NYT today on Egypt and Facebook bangs this nail on the head. Read the whole thing, but here is one quote I love: To be sure, Facebook, Twitter and blogging are truly revolutionary tools of communication and expression that have brought so many new and compelling voices to light. At their best, theyโ€™re changing the nature of political communication and news. But, at their worst, they can become addictive substitutes for real action. How often have you heard lately: โ€œOh, I tweeted about that.โ€ Or โ€œI posted that on my Facebook page.โ€ Really? In most cases, thatโ€™s about as impactful as firing a mortar into the Milky Way galaxy. Unless you get out of Facebook and into someoneโ€™s face, you really have not acted. And, as Syriaโ€™s vicious regime is also reminding us: โ€œbang-bangโ€ beats โ€œtweet-tweetโ€ every day of the week.

      1. Guest

        One of the things we keep forgetting is that as the world around us changes we change too.Yes, we have truly revolutionary tools for communication and expression and the internet has turned each and everyone of us into “voices” and or “agents” – we have all become entitled individuals, but we are also losing the sense of a call to action that was inherent in the social contract.Its almost as if while the internet has given us the ability to express our individuality or humanness and to say “Here I am” we have also lost the sense of or bond of humanness…So now we have some guy in Montreal who decides to cut up a sexual partner just for his 15 minutes of internet fame…that’s alienation and you cannot base a concept of “community” which is a big buzz word nowadays on alienated individuals.Lets not forget that the whole Arab Spring started in Tunisia with a street side merchant setting himself aflame….

  30. LE

    The pricing will definitely hurt adoption of this. The dollar amount isn’t the issue. It’s the friction.…I would only charge companies, individuals (or animals) on a freemium basis. Let anyone have a page and then chisle over premium features.There is no cost to redirect a domain name by URL forwarding to a site and just about all registrars do this for the price of the domain.To illustrate, I redirected to

    1. paul berry

      thank you for this thought @Le its a very good point

      1. LE

        (I removed the forwarding I setup a few days ago btw thinking that the thread was old.)

  31. Carl Rahn Griffith


  32. Robert Thuston

    Paul, think about it in terms of behaviors. Joel Spolsky has a great perspective on this that I’ve never forgotten. At stack exchange there are 2 specific behaviors… people ask questions throughout the day on stack exchange, and people answer those questions at night. Minds are one track, habits are important. What is the repeatable behavior of users on RebelMouse? and if it’s not sticky enough, what should it be? Creating the expectations that @domainregistry:disqus talks about are important for this.

    1. paul berry

      thanks @Bertrood:disqus awesome point about spolsky and the question + answer times. we’re within weeks of releasing the pieces that answer a lot of the stickiness questions

      1. Robert Thuston

        How can you make the “add story”, not only a habit, but a neurotic one for users of the site?… Maybe the add story function needs to take precedence over everything else (i.e – captures the top half of the user’s landing page, etc.) – Good luck… you’ll get it, just keep going.

  33. Abdallah Al-Hakim

    The first thing to come to mind was the similarity of Rebelmouse to Twylah. Still, even Twylah (and I thought they did a good job) was a site I visited in first 2-3 weeks and then my return trips dwindled to almost zero right now. The point of this is that I am relying more on twitter, engagio, disqus and Quora for people discovery and don’t see the value much in Twylah or RebelMouse. In fact, I find to be the best aggregator of news. It will be interesting to see how these products develop

  34. Robert Thuston

    @twitter-77319557:disqus, you’re onto something after reading the FastCompany and Mashable articles on RebelMouse. Instead of the AVC users here starting their day by going to, they will go to Fred Wilson’s RebelMouse site.Be sure to speak with John Battelle (in San Fran – with Battelle Media). He will be very interested in RebelMouse. He’s done a couple of posts in the last year on the need for an “Identity Re-Aggregator”, and this seems to nail what he’s talking about.Here’s John’s post:…You’ll notice my name at the bottom of the comments (mentioning “Mibrary” which aims to solve this from a different perspective – disclaimer – my beta website).

  35. leigh

    Aggregation of our social selves = personal portal = fail

    1. Carl Rahn Griffith

      The voice of reason! Well said.

  36. Pete Griffiths

    I haven’t managed to get my invitation yet so please excuse my naive question.How effective is one ring to rule them all? Didn’t Flock and Rockmelt try to solve the same problem?

  37. Kirsten Lambertsen

    Checked it out after seeing raves about it on PandoDaily. Looks like a much smarter I really prefer RebelMouse’s layout to, say, Pinterest’s. I don’t like everything being the same started out doing something like this and pivoted to email. RebelMouse seems to have found a winning way curating our graphs for us.

  38. bernardlunn

    I love Hootsuite for this kind of thing, not sure I see a pain point that is not already addressed.

  39. Ryan Frew

    Gahhhhhhh! I was about to comment that this is the biggest threat to Facebook I’ve seen in a long time…until I went to register and they insist on either a Facebook or Twitter account. Whhhhyyyy??!!

  40. Dave W Baldwin

    Interesting post/comments. I think the answer to everyone who wouldn’t leave @twitter-77319557:disqus alone with his family is the “missing ingredient” that is being hacked at… yet has a long road ahead. Then you can have the different dimensions to the page turning to bring to the observer which dimension of yours they want to interact with. Good job Paul

  41. VincentWright

    Fred, I so much like what I see at RebelMouse that I merely wanted to say: “Thank you for introducing us to RebelMouse…” Nicely conceived and nicely rendered site…

  42. VincentWright

    Oh! By the way, Fred: On RebelMouse, your “Subscribe” button for Facebook is not set up for subscribing to you on Facebook but, rather, for adding you on Facebook. If you do want Facebook subscribers rather than additional friends, you may want to change your settings on Facebook to accommodate subscribers…

  43. Brand Winnie

    Rebelmouse is ok but like some of the commentors have confirmed, it has a bit of a hard-to-read/digest interface. What we are building at Seshn ( is truly revolutionary in the sense that you own your content. We realize that people don’t want to be thrown into yet another network where they don’t have control & they have a profile like everyone else. That’s why style & data portability is extremely important and not talked about a lot currently but will be.We actually store and archive your posts in the DB at Seshn, so you retain all your content from your social networks. We then aggregate the content into interest/passion-based hubs, where people can discover new people (that are like them) and the content they are creating. Scoble just requested to play around with our private beta, would love to set you up to. I can get you in, to play around with it today. Let me know. (brandon @ seshn dot com) Thanks!