Most social media sites have some type of functionality for sharing something that you like with a friend. The good part about these features is that they make it easy to help others find great content, they increase the amount of useful and enjoyable information that comes your way, and they can help users to get votes for a submission. The bad part is that they are ineffective on most social media sites due to an overload of spam.
StumbleUpon, on the other hand, has been able to develop a system that offers the best of sharing without all of the negatives. Here are 7 reasons that I prefer StumbleUpon’s share with a friend feature over those of other social media sites.
1. No email is involved
One of the major downfalls of Digg’s shout system and others that are similar is that users simply get bombarded with email. Most users want to find the best content, but not at the expense of having a mailbox full or these emails every single day. With SU a user is alerted within the browser (by way of the toolbar), so no mail is necessary for communicating the message.
2. It’s easy
Sharing a page, picture, or video that you like is easier with StumbleUpon than with any other social media site that I have seen. If you have the toolbar installed it can be sent in just a matter of seconds. There’s no need to leave the page you’re on and login to a particular social media site to share it. Everything you need is easily accessible from the toolbar.
3. It is not abused
When compared to the shared feature on other major social media sites, StumbleUpon’s is really not abused. I have well over 100 mutual friends and I only get a few shared items each day. That lack of abuse makes it much more enjoyable to use.
4. It discourages spam
By forcing you to share an item with no more than one friend at a time, it essentially discourages spam. You can still easily send it to more people (to my knowledge there is no limit), but it will take you much longer. As a user, I like knowing that the friend sending me the item has taken a few seconds to send it to me individually.
5. It is effective
With the lack of spam you might think that people choose not to abuse it because it doesn’t work in the first place. I don’t think this is the case. In the situations where I have shared my own pages with friends it has drawn some new traffic, and I have seen very good results from others when I have shared a page of theirs with my friends. As a user that is looking to find new content, it can be an extremely convenient way to find new pages, much more so than with other social media sites.
6. It takes you straight to the page
When you are receiving a shared item from a friend all you have to do is click a button on the toolbar and you’re taken directly to the page that they want you to see. With other similar systems you’ll first get an email, then you’ll click on a link in the email to be taken to the social media site, then you’ll have to click through again before you finally arrive at the specific page that is being shared. SU is just much quicker with fewer steps.
7. Communication is possible at both ends
When you share an item with a friend you’ll be able to type in a brief message to explain the item. And when you receive an item from a friend you’ll have the option to reply. All without even using email. The networking and communication on StumbleUpon is much better than many social media sites, and this is one example.
What Are You’re Thoughts?
What do you think of SU’s share feature? How do you think it stacks up when compared to other similar systems?