If you want to continue to pump out high quality content on your non-profit’s blog, you have to continually consume high quality content – every day. The problem for many folks is that it’s very difficult to manage massive quantities of content, even with tools like Google Reader.

That all changed when Alltop recently announced MyAlltop.

For folks who don’t know, Alltop is Guy Kawasaki‘s “online magazine rack” of the best blogs covering hundreds of topics. Sports, Motorcycles, Twitter, Skating, Classical Music, ADHD, Dating - you name it.

Until last week, users had to search page after page in order to find content they liked – and then bookmark that content with tools like Delicious. With MyAlltop, users can now save their favorite blogs with their own custom page. Once these blogs are saved they can be organized on the page – up, down – right, left.

Sorry Google Reader, Ive Been Sleeping With Alltop

So what does this have to do with Google Reader?

The week before MyAlltop came out, I read Grant Griffiths post asking “Is RSS a complete failure?”  Grant makes the case that although bloggers can’t live without RSS, blog readers are not adopting this technology.

Maybe I was channeling Guy when I commented: “We might have to wait for better readers for the average Joe.” I don’t know about you, but Google Reader has always been an ass-pain for me.

MyAlltop eliminates at least 11 headaches I’ve had with Google Reader:

  1. One page- Aren’t we all trying to get our lives onto one web-page?
  2. Easy to use –  No folders or tags to continually organize.
  3. Hand selected blogs – Guy commented on Twitter: “Would you like to see how much we reject?”
  4. Find “blog gems-  Just by browsing through Alltop.
  5. Share on Facebook and Twitter – Again, very simple for any user.
  6. Power of lessLimiting your focus to a small group of blogs means that you will actually read them (and not just “star” them with good intentions)!
  7. Extremely scannable- Interesting content can be easily scanned with pop-up excerpts.
  8. Easily add new blogs – One mouse click adds a blog to your custom page.
  9. Stay informed – “News about Alltop” email subscription pings you with new catagories.
  10. Smart news service – The Smartbrief service has  “personal research assistants: handpicking, distilling and disseminating the best and most important news stories from a wide range of sources.”
  11. Actual human beings! – If I want to give feedback on Alltop, you can easily contact them or ping them on Twitter. @neenz has been great at responding to the few questions I’ve had.

Other uses for MyAlltop?

How about your MyAlltop? Link it below:

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  1. I need to go check MyAlltop out. Sounds interesting.

    Have you tried: http://www.feedly.com/

    It solves MANY of the issues you list above. Very clean, quick, easy to share things on multiple platforms, integrates with Google reader, etc…

    It does not have the human aspect of it though, which may be the kicker, though if i wanted to add a blog to MyAlltop that Alltop didnt support what would I do?


    frank’s last blog post..franswaa: @tweettop we need a nonprofit topic/category :)

  2. I was gung-ho on MyAlltop when I first heard about it – until I realized that you can only add RSS feeds from existing Alltop pages, and none of your own. When that feature becomes avaiable (or demand calls for it?) then I’ll take a second look.

    HART (1-800-HART)’s last blog post..Off Leash or On?

  3. If you don’t mind missing half of your news… I suppose this is a good idea. For me, one page is the opposite of the goal. I wanted threaded inbox style numbers. Would you want Outlook to display the last five emails from each person, limited to only the ones you set up? Perhaps I’m missing some feature sets.

  4. I use Google reader but never get to it. Then I end up just surfing thru my blog roll to read my favorites. I signed up for the MyAllTop but because my home life is often like My Big Top Circus, I haven’t been able to go back and figure it out. I think I’d like it if I had five minutes to put some effort in.

    The Daily Blonde’s last blog post..The Coregasm Workout

  5. Am I missing something in your paean to Alltop – How is that any different than having your feeds on a tab on Google desktop ?
    Except for your last three points you can do all the rest with Google (not reader) and have the flexibility of choosing your feeds (as opposed to what Guy wants you to see)

  6. I have tried Netvibes, netnewswire and a few others…. Nothing “formal” sticks. I mostly find reading material through Twitter using Tweetie on my iPhone which allows me to save links to Instapaper for subsequent reading…. Within a couple of days. I listen to some blogs on PimpMyNews on my iPhone while I’m moving about. My highest priority blogs (6) I get by email. But I confess it’s hit and miss as to when and where I read them. I love the IDEA of having all this info at my fingertips (literally, on the iPhone)…. But I don’t think this info overload is sustainable for a sane person. How about a little peace, for god’s sake!

  7. @Rajtilak With all due respect to Guy and his opinions, I would like to live in an unfiltered world where I can choose my content. For those who are Guy fans – go bananas with Alltop :-)

  8. @John Wanted to say that I DO appreciate the post! :-) I have used Alltop before… but that MyAlltop feature will be a draw for me. Seems like a great way to keep up with the major news on several fave topics. The lesser known blogs I can continue to get by email. Maybe that will be a good strategy to lessen the overload. I guess each person has to decide what works for them and how much info they REALLY need and can ACTUALLY read. Still trying to figure that out! :-)

    Bill Grey’s last blog post..Links for 2009-01-19 [del.icio.us]

  9. I'm late to the party, as usual. But until I read this article, I didn't quite have an answer to “Why Alltop?” Now I do. It would be great to be able to personalize a profile of myself so that when I share MyAlltop, at least I get a link back.

    Here's mine: http://my.alltop.com/anthonymendez
    Being in the voice-over business doesn't provide me with much to add.

  10. I'm late to the party, as usual. But until I read this article, I didn't quite have an answer to “Why Alltop?” Now I do. It would be great to be able to personalize a profile of myself so that when I share MyAlltop, at least I get a link back.

    Here's mine: http://my.alltop.com/anthonymendez
    Being in the voice-over business doesn't provide me with much to add.

  11. @Hart – Agreed. That is a minus for Alltop. I’ve actually gone through a content purge that have resulted in me using Alltop & email subscriptions only. That said, I’ll still go “hunting” on Delicious, Stumbleupon and Digg.

  12. @Frank – One of the main selling points of Alltop (to me) is that poopie is strained out of the content (for the most part). However, you can always “suggest” blogs to Alltop. As Hart said, I’m sure they’ll add a feature where you can add your own blogs that aren’t on the “magazine rack”.

  13. @Ethan – I’m not speaking for everyone, but I find most RSS readers hard to manage. For blogs that are mission-critical (Chrisg.com, HubSpot…), I subscribe via email. My friend @joewaters uses Twitter as his reader by marking great links as “favorites”.

    I also find that Alltop provides valuable content that I might otherwise miss. Lately, my writing has been influenced lately by Meta, which is a minimalist design blog on posterous. Completely different from Beth, Chris Brogan and all the other “blogs one should be reading”.

  14. @Bill – In truth, I subscribe to many sources for content – SocialMedian, Posterous, Twitter, Stumbleupon. What I love about Alltop is the high quality selection (magazine rack), and the extreme simplicity of it.

  15. @Bill – You’re welcome. This post is actually a result of my desperate need to simplify and focus on essentials. MyAlltop is a great solution – for me. As you said, “each person has to decide what works for them.”