Twitter is awash with people, groups, and institutions posting links and useful information. But monitoring Twitter to find those links and useful items is incredibly difficult.
I’ve been trying for years. In 2010 I used Listimonkey, a service that let you monitor lists for hashtags and keywords. Then I went through a long convoluted process to filter that data (wrote an article about it at the time) and had an awkward-but-usable solution. Then the OAuthpocolypse happened and that was it for Listimonkey.
Then I moved to Undrip, which wasn’t a filter solution but rather surfaced interesting links from your social media accounts. It was mobile only, which I didn’t like, but I made time to use it and while it wasn’t perfect, it did find me decent stuff. Then Undrip ran out of money and resources and died in 2013.
Then I found Nuzzel. Nuzzel is both a desktop tool and an app (I have used the app but I infinitely prefer the desktop tool) that pulls links from your Twitter and Facebook feed into one easy place for you to review. It’s integrated with Pocket and Instapaper so it’s easy to scan your feed and save things for later. It’s also integrated with Slack and Buffer so you can quickly share items if that’s what you’d rather do. You can set up e-mail alerts when stories are shared by more than x number of friends in your feed.
In short, it’s incredibly useful for separating the wheat from the chaff on Twitter and I consider it an essential part of my social media monitoring routine.
So when I found out that Nuzzel was offering a Pro subscription, I got out my credit card, not wanting it to go the way of Listimonkey or Undrip.
(Before I get into the Pro offerings, let me make it clear: I got out my credit card and paid for a one-year subscription. I have not received and will not receive any consideration from Nuzzel for this article. Nuzzel probably knows who I am because I pester Jonathan Abrams all the time on Twitter, but they aren’t giving me any money or other material benefit and never have. Okay?)
If you are new to Nuzzel and you at the current benefits offered by Pro and weigh them against the price ($9.99 a month or $99.99 a year) you’re probably not going to feel compelled to upgrade. But I’m encouraged, and I want Nuzzel to succeed, so I’m putting my money where my mouth is.
What are the benefits, anyway? The biggest one is keyword filtering. I can set up keyword filters to avoid stories that might be clogging up my feed. Jonathan Abrams of Nuzzel told me that the keyword filters are only for headlines.
Initially I was a little reluctant to try this, but I found I could get rid of a lot of political stuff I didn’t want just by filtering out Republicans / Democrats / Liberals / Conservatives. I’m not filtering out names specifically because often people can be used as examples in resource announcement headlines (“Joe Smith Has Three Noses According To Political Nose Database”) but this should cut down a lot of clutter.
Besides that the benefits at the moment are fairly pedestrian. (Jonathan Abrams told me in an e-mail that more upgrades are coming.) Having a Pro subscription will remove advertising from the mobile app and makes a “dark mode” available for the mobile app as well. The current Pro release might have been intended as a soft launch anyway – I haven’t seen any official announcements and as of this writing Nuzzel hasn’t even mentioned Pro on its blog.
I can’t honestly say that the keyword filtering, dark mode, and advertising removal is worth $99.99 a year to all users. I can say that based on the time it has saved me up until now and the expectation for more features in the future, $99.99 was a no-brainer, and should be for many long-time power users of Nuzzel.