We live in an Age of Creation. You can record a video or a song, write a book, blog post, or tweet, and even live stream your dinner. All you need is a device connected to the internet to share your creation with the world. You can even build a physical product, fund it on Kickstarter, and mass produce it.
More "things" are being created than we have time to consume. Therefore the question of how you spend your time becomes very important. Given a finite amount of time, and an infinite number of things, which do you choose? Which articles do you read? Which podcasts do you listen to? Which products do you use?
Enter the Age of Curation.
An age where content is sifted. Filtered down to the good stuff. An age where curators you trust and products you love tell you what to consume. They simplify things, save you time, and make you happy. Their job is to match you with the things you need at this moment. The things that are worth your time, so you don't have to go through the pain of finding them yourself.
In the last few months I've noticed an uptick in Age of Curation offerings.
7 of the 8 Newsletters I subscribe to curate content:
- a16z Weekend Newsletter (list of articles being read by VC's from a renowned Silicon Valley VC firm)
- The Journal, by Kevin Rose (monthly newsletter containing Kevin's favorite discoveries from the web)
- 5-Bullet Friday, by Tim Ferriss (weekly newsletter containing 5 things Tim has been consuming including products, articles, music, and others)
- I also received this email from Tim this week: 10 favorite purchases in the last 10 months
- Hacker Newsletter (weekly newsletter of the best articles on startups, technology, programming, and more)
- mi niu york, by Irene Pedruelo (weekly newsletter for curious characters, treasure hunters, and eccentrics)
- Inside Daily Brief (daily newsletter packed with all the trends, news, and other links you need to be smart, informed, and ahead of the curve)
- theSkimm (daily newsletter with everything you need to know to start your day)
Chris Sacca, billionaire investor, recently made an appearance on the Bill Simmons podcast. During the interview he shared several products that are on his phone home screen. Two of them were curation products:
- REX (share your favorite recommendations with your favorite people)
- Nuzzle (discover top news from friends and influencers)
Product Hunt, a site that has become very popular in tech circles, curates the best new tech products. And the recently launched Jelly 2.0, is a human-powered search engine that promises to give you your "time back", by returning a curated answer to you instead of millions of hyperlinks.
One of my favorite apps is Pocket. I especially love their "Pocket Hits" email, a curated list of articles they recommend I read. I often save at least half of the articles listed in each email to Pocket:
What does it all mean? Where will the Age of Curation take us?
I believe some very interesting companies and individuals will start to separate themselves from the competition. Tim Ferriss is a prime example of the curator influence a person can have.
Twitter is sitting on a treasure chest of data that is waiting to be curated. Twitter Search at it's current iteration doesn't cut it. For example how can I discover the 5 most-recommended guitar articles read by beginner guitar players?
I see a future where we no longer lose time to bad content/things. Instead, a tool or curator learns us so well, that they are able to recommend the perfect thing for every moment. Never see a bad movie again, or read a post that doesn't bring any value to you.
The Age of Curation is here. The challenge is who do you listen to?