Zite vs. Flipboard? Internet candy or Internet crack?

Until recently, Flipboard has been my internet mag of choice.  The genius idea of gathering your all Facebook and Twitter posts and turning them into graphically engaging magazine pages made it so much more compelling than reading endless streams of tweets and social bleats on the actual FB and Twitter feeds. It made my life look more like Life Magazine and less like Life cereal.

Flipboard also offers an addictive selection of other content providers to suit your every interest and private passion. It allows you to choose content providers you like and turn them into your own private Zine. I’m partial to Food 52, Ted Talks, Design Sponge, Bay Area Bites, CNN Breaking News  and Fortune Magazine. There are literally dozens of pop content providers to choose from in all categories.
Until recently, I loved my nightly tryst with Flipboard with its gorgeous graphics and compelling page layouts. I’d waste endless insomniac hours on bits of fluff and semi-useful kernals because it was so easy to just flip the “pages.” and find something new.

So, when I first found Zite, I was a bit snobby about it. The layouts are not as elegant. The  content choices are not so clear cut. And worst of all, Zite deigned to recommend more articles I might like if I simply clicked on an up arrow on items I enjoyed. Well, we all know how bad these suggestion engines are! Amazon continues to think I need computer cables because I once did or assures me I’d like a book because of a previous purchase…for someone else! One of the things I tell my still print-literate friends is that I love the New York Times because it exposes me to new stories I’d never have read otherwise. The NY Times in print doesn’t put blinders on my reading habits, funneling me into a reading feedlot like a farmed pig.

But I digress. For months, I avoided  Zite in favor of Flipboard’s more comely competition. But one  particularly sleepless night, I decided to give it another go. And I found myself reading lots of articles I’d never seen before and giving them the thumbs up. In fact, on some articles, I could be really specific about what I specifically enjoyed about the article– the writer, the topic, the recipe, etc. The next night, I opened my Zite and found even more interesting articles. I thumbed those winners. I chose a few new categories, even made my own “San Francisco.” Night afer night, Zite was offering me more tasty gleanings. They were giving me bliss. They were giving me brain candy. No, in truth, they were giving me Internet Crack. So addictive. So scary. So seductive!

Frankly, I now look forward to my nightly Zite tryst to see what new pleasures my online lover has cooked up for me. Tasty little morsels of information for me and me alone. I have been seduced by the most attentive of pursuers and I have given in.

But. Enough. Confessions. Enough details of my sordid attraction to Zite. My shameful abandonment of Flipboard. Well almost abandonment as I am still lured by those still sexy layouts of FB and Twitter feeds. And, Flipboard has one other weapon that also keeps me dallying:  the “curators.” In my deeply disorganized life, a little curation is a good thing. Flipboard has these uber taste-makers & content editors in spades. My current favorites are Michael Pollen (Food industrial Complex), Maria Popova (cultural ideas and trends), Design Sponge (design) etc.

Ok, I confess. I am unfaithful. I am a slut. I am sleeping with both Flipboard and Zite.  But I cannot choose. Do I have to? Do you?

3 comments

  1. I know the feeling of being lured away from Flipboard by the ever-seductive Zite. BUT…in all honesty there is one technicalitie that, for me anyway, makes Flipboard still my fav.

    I’m farsighted, so I have to turn the fonts up a notch or two in either of these products, but Zite will only increase the font size in articles that are selected for actual reading. The initial article teaser text is fixed at somewhere below minuscule and can not be changed. Zite tech support tells me this can’t accomplished…but then how does Flipboard do it? Increasing font size in Flipboard increases it everywhere.

    While I would LOVE to make Zite my one-and-only mag reader….it’s not going to happen until I can read the teaser text.

    Like

  2. I loved Flipboard as well before I was recommended Zite by a Twitter follower. I gave it a go and now I don’t use Flipboard anymore. I just love how Zite aggregate the news from all the sites I haven’t even heard about

    Like

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