One of the interesting after-effects of my experience with bloggers at our Sapphire event was the fact that the group remained a group after the event concluded. The group is dubbed the “Irregulars” and features a number of prominent voices in the enterprise technology blogosphere. We have several really productive communication channels where we roundtable interesting topics about the enterprise market, and this collaboration makes us all a little better. What is also rather nice about the whole experience is that while we all could count several pre-existing contacts from the entire group, the fact is that this has been a really great way for me to network with people I did not previously know and I am better for it.
As early as late last year there were several ideas floated independently about establishing a “tech.memeorandum for enterprise” but when we went to the various groups who do this we were told that the relatively small group of bloggers and the limited crosslinking made it such that it just wouldn’t work the way we wanted. Personally, I think that this has more to do with the fact that the enterprise market is a little more walled off than the consumer side and quite honestly, these companies and the commentary about them is probably less interesting to the broader market. Nonetheless, the requests for “digg for the enterprise” kept coming and this confirmed my belief that in a tech news cycle dominated by consumer internet companies and early stage startups that there is a neglected niche that we could build a presence in.
For the last month we have been contributing articles and comments to a site that is very much like Digg for the enterprise. Crispynews is a service that enables anyone to create a digg-like service with whatever focus they want. Simply called Enterprise Software News and Commentary, the news site has exceeded my expectations in a couple of ways and come up short in a few others. First and foremost, it is important to know that this is not a meta-blog that captures only the posts that the Irregulars are writing; what this is is a service that we have been contributing links to other people’s articles and then commenting on them.
Like Digg, there is a rating function where people can vote on articles and promote them, and there is a function that tracks the articles you are commenting on. The UI is pretty rudimentary and that’s probably a reflection of the fact that Crispynews is itself a pretty early stage startup. I would love the ability to have URL redirection built in, as well as the ability to have multiple categories capability, but in time I am confident these things will be developed. Right now, the service works quite well and is free of malfunctions, and on top of that has pretty good performance.
I believe that this news service has some significant potential with regard to capturing news and commentary specifically about enterprise software. Please check it out and contribute.
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