StumbleUpon for those who have been living under a rock, or have better things to do with there life is a social bookmarking or a social network or a social browser or a social insert your own word here website owned by EBay.
Although in social network analysis it is categorized in the same niche as Digg, Delicious, Reddit and other social bookmarking websites StumbleUpon is in it's own way unique.
There are a million articles on how it works if that's what your looking for go look at them, we are looking at the effect of StumbleUpon on your Website or Blog and an analysis of the knock on effect on your life.
When your content becomes popular on StumbleUpon you experience a kind of online 15 minutes of fame.This has happened to me a few times with different pages on different blogs and every time it has left me with quiet a bad taste in my mouth.
We all want the traffic it's great, five thousand hits in an hour on a blog that usually gets five hundred hits in a day !.But those who did take me literally when i said go look at the millions of sites with info on how it works will also see a million articles on how to make the most of the traffic StumbleUpon brings to you.
That's the problem and i am, as an avid Stumbler no different we don't hang around.You get about five seconds of our time and then we click Stumble and continue on our adventure.Rarely do we Subscribe to feeds or news letters so we wont be back, Clicking your AdSense will only slow us down and if your selling something, well you could Give it away for free and not get any takers.
The first time i felt the Stumble effect was on a blog post, it contained another quirky list of strange facts.They came they saw but they didn't buy the Tee Shirt.Naively i thought this was down to me, my blog is not good enough, , the design is not up to scratch, it did not load fast enough...And that's why becoming popular on StumbleUpon is like a bad one night stand, it's great while it lasts but it will have no effect in the long term.
It doesn't mean your not interesting or you don't look good or your not fast enough (or too fast as the case may be).It means nothing just enjoy your 15 minutes.
Last week i received an email from StumbleUpon containing a list of the top 'Stumbles' of 2009.
I have seen the page that got the most hits lots of times and it's a great well edited video of people getting lucky (Near car crash misses and the like).
Could i tell you without searching the address of the site ? No.
I do remember that it's a website for a newspaper , Can i remember which newspaper ? No.
Do i remember the actual title of the video ? No.
Each time i landed on the site i watched the video had a laugh and moved on.
As a Webmaster (I'm a Blogger but Webmaster sounds cool) StumbleUpon is an enigma, it can and has drove me crazy it is like having a hot girl looking across a club at you only to realise she has a lazy eye and is looking at the guy beside you.
So has StumbleUpon achieved what all the so called 'Social' websites have been trying to achieve and actually made a website for the user not another social bandwagon ?
Well that remains to be seen.
What is for sure is if you have a blog, website or even a YouTube channel you too may well be Stumbled Upon eventually and will be left with that same dazed and confused look.
But addicted as i am to the highs and lows don't let me stop you from clicking the 'SU' icon above the post and starting another episode of self loathing.