6.02.2008

plurkers, plurking, and plurk you.

plurk.
what does this evoke for you? lurking pigs? fluorescent pork? frat boy puke?
something unspeedy and possibly the antithesis of a bird, say... twitter?


some are pointing this new platform as the answer to our twitter addiction problems. it's new--that means more uptime, right? and it has to be better, if it's new. new and improved, or something.

well, i'm going to give you the good, the bad, and the ugly on plurk.

THE GOOD:
for visual learners, this is a plus. it's a flash reminiscent timeline that enables users to scroll through the day, with most recent plurks on the left, and a pull of the mouse enabling you to view back previous plurks (do i really have to say that?).

it's more visually engaging, offering different emoticon sets for those with different levels of Karma (which is earned via participation and recruitment), as well as personalized "plurk user mascots" to better express your plurkiness on your plurk profile. case in point:


[this winged thing best represents the digital plurk me]


to boot, when you respond to a plurk, it's like a little mini comment feed, enabling you to keep track of conversations in a neatly organized way. the following system is set up very similarly to Ning. you can have friends (mutual followers) and fans (those who you don't follow back) all plain to see (for some this may be a bad thing!) however, you can select what group (clique) sees a particular plurk, which i know some folks have been wanting (though i personally don't).

lastly, my personal favourite aspect is the Twistori effect, wherein my plurks are fed through tags like "loves," "likes," "shares," "feels," "thinks," and "asks." i'm sure i'm just associating my zen in its use, but it is, i find, a fun aspect.

THE BAD
it's closer to a mini social network than a micro blog feed. for those looking for direct comparisons, i don't also see any way for it to feed into your phones the way that twitter does, but i haven't looked that far because i'm a primary web-based twitter user and new to plurk. (as i assumed, i lied: "contrary to the official FAQ, there’s a mobile version of the site located at http://plurk.com/m which works just fine. SMS support is nowhere to be found, though." found here.)

it's really, painfully slow. i can add a friend, and they can add me back, and i won't know for twenty minutes at best. my karma doesn't update. it takes awhile for others' plurks to show up. it doesn't auto-refresh (so there's still that problem). the alerts are always "late" (ie, an alert was still there to add a friend, even after i'd added him ten minutes ago). as we speak, i have 3 plurk "responses" but the feed only clocks me at 1. statistics = fail.

also, it's not intuitive and somewhat confusing. it's certainly going to be more difficult for "easy adopter" types to stick with it. your mom won't be following your plurks anytime soon. the layout is a little clunky--i can't type a response and view my timeline comfortably at the same time. direct messages don't technically exist; instead, you plurk to a particular person and set it to private. clunky. it's hard to get a sense of who is saying what when. also difficult to figure out where someone "replied" to something you said--requires a lot of back-scrolling.

not to mention, it's difficult to find anyone else, though not impossible. you can go through your friends' friends myspace style. you can invite friends. you can search for existing friends via their emails. but it's so convoluted that it's a little hard to be bothered. all in all, it's very much "twitter 2.0" with all the web graphics and complicated nonsense. in some regards, it's cool, but it takes some getting used to with all the "noise." i don't think i'll be switching over fully anytime soon.

but, in case you want to find me, i'm here: user/thegirlriot or use this link, which automatically makes you friends with me, and you can skip that annoying part of the show where you have to locate me: make friends with Riot

THE UGLY
............PLURK?! really? wtf name is that?

what does "plurk" mean to you?
if you heard this on the street and had to define it, what would you say "plurk" is? noun, adjective, verb?

honestly. at least "twitter" and "tweet" is an actual word. "plurk" is like lurk with a superfluous "p" for flair, or pork with a random "l" injected. i keep typing plork instead of plurk. ick.

my contribution is that "plurk" is a noun, slang, for that person who sits in their office plunking away at their keyboards, lurking on extracurricular stuff, and only pretending to do work. heh.

2 comments:

dearjanesample said...

thank you for the review it helps with the painful decision around - should I join plurk or not?

the girl Riot said...

eh, i joined, as you can see. i will engage minimally until otherwise forced. i'm still sold on twitter until it crashes and burns. and that's my professional opinion. hahaha. right.