ThinkProgress.org shows up at Netscape and digg, and folks are not happy.

Update: I’m discussing the issue with the editor of ThinkProgress and he is sensitive to the issues I’ve outlined below. He’s already identified himself in his bio, and I am hoping the other members of ThinkProgress do the same. I’m also encouraging the members of ThinkProgress to participate on Netscape in stories other than their own. That is the real issue in my mind. In social news if you only show up to promote your self you look like you’re selfish.
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Some folks are not happy that the staff of thinktank ThinkProgress.org are active on social news sites like Netscape and digg. Frankly, I encourage everyone to participate and just obey the rules of not trying to game the system. If you’re going to join a social news site as a group I suggest:

1. Be involved beyond stories that link back to you site. For every story about your site you put in add three that are not from your site. Vote and comment for other stories that don’t link back to your site. In other words don’t be selfish. If you’re selfish on Netscape folks will report you as gaming the system–or the system might report you–and your domain name will get suspended.

2. Be up front about who you are. Only one of the four ThinkProgress staffers on Netscape had a bio, and that bio just had their URL (again, selfish promotion.. but it is a bio). Put in your story. Say who you are and why you’re here. Tell us what you do a for a living. You’re gonna get outed at some point anyway, you might was well out yourself and get the credit for being honest and upfront–for being AUTHENTIC.

3. Be fair with the titles and descriptions of your stories. If you right thing are that inflammatory you might get a little more attention in the short term, but you’re only going polarize folks AGAINST YOU. You’re going to be left preaching to the converted and get NOTHING DONE. Be intellectually honest and consider the other sides point of view or you’ll be ignored/hated by the majority of users.

Right now ThinkProgress looks like a spamming group because they are only involved in their own stories. That’s like coming to dinner party and only talking about yourself–folks will hate you. Folks will not invite you back to the party. Folks will think you’re small and selfish.

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