One of the many bonuses of question and answer sites like Quora is that to get good answers, you don’t necessarily have to ask the questions. By searching questions, you can use other people’s queries as a guide to your own research and information base, stumbling on threads of information you didn’t know you were interested in. So, for social media enthusiasts, what are some of the best question and answer threads on Quora?
- How did the idea for hashtags originate in Twitter? If you are new to Twitter, you’re in for a real treat. While many people are still unsure of the difference between Quora and other question and answer sites, one of its main differentiating factors is that top tier professionals are actively answering questions. This is particularly true in the area of social media. In this case, Chris Messina answers the question, and Chris Messina is, in fact, the person who created the hashtag. Not only does he give a thorough response, but the thread has several interesting posts about the history of the hashtag.
- What are the top 10 API’s to keep an eye on in 2011? Not only does this thread provide some interesting links to API’s, some of the answers are very thorough, giving reasoned and researched responses. While it has eight answers right now, the number of response will likely rise. So, for those who want to be in the know, go check out the question, and if you think you have something to add, contribute.
- What are best practices for building something like a News Feed. While this thread is a little more specific and the answers quite dense for a casual social media user, people interested in code, NewsFeeds, and social media business models cannot afford to miss the responses. Answerers include Andew Bosworth – who created the Facebook NewsFeed- and Adam D’Angelo – an ex-Facebook worker and co-founder of Quora. Their responses are thorough and open which in turn, seems to have encouraged a high level of answer from the entire thread.
- What are the top reasons to follow a brand on Twitter? Ever wonder why someone would ever follow a brand on Twitter? Well, this thread will answer that question and more. There are 16 answers, many of which are well researched and useful. Moreover, the answers come from for a diverse group of people, from CEO’s to students. There is some particularly good information for companies interested in understanding social media campaigns.
- Does the foursquare page with the crying woman with the crown on her head have a name? Turns out she does, and we find this out from Mary Sheilby – the woman who created the image. It’s always interesting to read some of the details behind the creation of social media sites, but this question is also a lead into to the topic of Foursquare more generally. From co-founders Dennis Crowley and Naveen Selvadurai to people like Mary Sheilby, lots of in house Foursquare members answer questions directly.