Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Launching our Curator program

Since the launch of the new site in January, ten thousand users have contributed almost 50,000 edits that we ultimately accepted. This is more than we expected and we truly want to thank all our contributors for all the work they have put into our system so far. As a regular visitor looking for business information, we want to create an environment where you can access information but also provide you with all the information you need to make the right call regarding the information itself.

In that regard, as we are reviewing the edits in moderation, it is coming as no surprise that the more you contribute to the system, the more you understand it and the better your contribution is.  This goes for the edits contributed as well as for the pages those contributors have added their information to. So in the same way that Amazon.com has a  top reviewer program, we have built our own program so that our visitors identify those contributors who have developed significant mastery of our application.

Those Expert contributors, as they start contributing significantly to Spoke beyond a natural level of 3 or 4 edits, need to gather the information available on the Internet about a topic, a company or a person, organize the collected data set into a coherent set and maintain that information over time. In a sense, that is very close to what a Curator does on a daily basis, hence our decision to call our expert contributors: Curators. Starting today, you will be able to see if specific information has been contributed by such an expert or if an individual has reached a certain level of expertise by checking his page.

We have defined two  levels of Curators: Curators and Expert Curators. The difference between the two of them is the scope of their contributions. Of course, Expert Curators contribute more than regular Curators but they are also contributing to more pages. As of today, we have 10 curators and 5 expert curators. You can also check on our leader board the significant contributors during the month as well as all time. Hopefully, you are already one of those significant contributors or you may decide to become one of them. Talking to existing Curators, there are multiple reasons for it:

Spoke helps you raise your visibility for the topics you are interested in: With your help, Spoke is quickly becoming the place to go for business information: with the amount of information we are collecting through our contributors as well as automatically, Spoke has become the most vibrant industry database where every company or person that matters should have a page. Even the most connected people see benefits in Spoke. Phil Rosenberg, one of Linkedin’s most connected career coaches with a group of more than 30,000 users says: “Spoke helps people interested in my topic find me.  Spoke helps me build my audience, by bringing me an additional source of traffic.”

Spoke helps you promote your content: MaryBartnikowski, one of the recent Spoke-A-Thon  contenders, commented: "i am so happy about your help in promoting my page on Spoke - people are buying my book now and i don't even know them so I am grateful. I have finished the audio version of my book too so that will be a new topic - YAY!!!"

Spoke is engaging, fun to use and community based. Rebecca Haden from Haden Interactive mentioned: "Spoke is a fun way to curate and share information, letting people include their favorite photos, links, videos, and lots of other kinds of content. You can create a page with flexibility, and it doesn't require any special skills. Every company should have one, and you'll enjoy creating pages for your topics, too. It's kind of addicting. Of course, it's also a great source of data, and I love the idea that we can all help make it even better."

Last but not least, Spoke will promote heavily the Curator program: being a curator and even better an expert curator will give more voice and more recognition to any edits you make both to a regular visitor but to the Spoke moderators as well.

We are constantly looking for contributors, curators or expert curators. So if you are interested, join our community and help us become a better database by providing your content.

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