So you might have noticed that we have a new badge/button/thing on our individual post pages. It's Google +1 and it's, in a nutshell, Google's response to Facebook's Like button. I'm posting a video below that has Google's quick take on it, but the main difference is that with Facebook, your shares and likes and recommends and such show up on your profile. If a friend/compatriot of yours "+1s" something, you'll see that show up in Google search results.
Anyway, I know we have those buttons and such on posts and I've never really explained what they are for in any detail, beyond mentioning them on podcasts and in videos as "a good thing to do." So here's the skinnee. This applies to most websites and not just Need Coffee, so if you are socially active on Twitter, Facebook or elsewhere on the net, you might find this of interest. If not, don't worry--this won't take long.
Q: Why did you add Google +1 to the site?
A: It's an experiment. If people actually use it and it brings traffic to the site, then we'll keep it. If it's not useful we'll get rid of it. But we figure it's worth a shot.
Q: Speaking of which, what are those other button things?
A: The buttons are, from left to right, StumbleUpon, Google +1, Facebook and Twitter. They work like this:
Q: Why do I/must I care?
A: Well, you don't have to, frankly. However, if you use any of the services tied to those buttons, it helps us out a great deal if you enjoy something you've read and want to share it with others. If you like something and you Stumble-Like it or Facebook-Like it or what-have-you, then it helps get us traffic. And traffic means we grow and as we grow we can turn around and do more stuff you enjoy. It's a snowball effect.
Q: So I should just run around clicking "like" on every post on the site?
A: If you like every post on the site, sure. But we would never ask anyone to share or like something they didn't actually honestly like or felt was worth sharing. If you do enjoy something, though, it helps us out a great deal if you do share it with others through those services. That's why, when it comes to supporting Need Coffee, if you can't actually donate to the cause, donating some clicks or shares comes a close second.
Q: Why don't you have a Digg button or a Reddit button or a [insert other name here]?
A: We used to have a whole slew of tiny buttons at the bottom of each post. But for whatever reason, services beyond the ones we have currently just never did anything for us, traffic-wise. So rather than just have them taking up space on the page, we pulled them off.
Anyway, I hope that helps explain a bit about what the hell those things are for and how they help us--and really, they help you too. I have found many awesome sites via those services. So if you haven't joined them, I do encourage that. If you ever run out of stuff to read here, it's a great way to go spelunking into the rest of the Net.
If you have a question I didn't address, feel free to hit me up in the comments. Thank you kindly.
The aforethreatened vid: