A community manager from Findings, one of my favorite social reading services, recently sent an email to see how the service was working for me. What great community management! I took the opportunity to give some feedback from a user perspective. Here’s my reply.
I’m glad Findings exists. From supporting Instapaper to the recent development of manual clips from paper sources, you’re doing so many things right.
As a brief review, I jotted down this feedback that you might want to consider:
Attribution could be improved to include author name. A post includes title and website as a default, but not author, and it seems like it should. (Not sure how you’d do this, since you’re pulling from the site information.) Maybe you could have a default space to enter the author name(s) manually, which would then display with each post.
When improving the bookmarket, note that some nested formatting, such as bullet points, is lost in a clip.
Improve thumbnail image support. Many clips have a generic (non)image.
Improve iPad functionality. Manually adding a clip with an ISBN gives and endless hourglass and can only be done through the web.
I’d like to be able to scroll through more “Latest Sources,” or set defaults so that only certain categories of sources will come up for me: by genre, location, etc.
Are you doing any work with publishers that you can share? This could be a great way for publishers and authors to promote discovery.
Keep publishing on the Findings blog (for example, with your new series about reading). I (and presumably others) want to hear about how the project is going and what developments are in store.