The List: Fostering great content
We may not need another Reddit clone, but we do need something that fixes the Reddit methodology. The site has become so inundated with spam and “hilarious” memes that it's hard to surface real, quality content anymore. One of the biggest problems with these sorts of sites is the question of how to surface quality content without needing to screen out all of the poor quality content.
It looks like The List, a new service may have found a way to solve that. Their methodology is very similar to Reddit, but it forces users to “pay” karma to submit content. To make a post to The List, a user pays 2% of the karma that they currently have, thus stopping them from submitting an overflow of content. This also allows users over time as they gain karma to front-page a link easier at the cost of more karma.
There's definitely an interesting model there - forcing users to put their skin on the line to post makes them think twice about what they're doing. Do they really love or think that post was useful, or is it just a link that they found briefly interesting? It may solve a few issues with these 'link sharing' sites and allow different users to surface good content on a regular basis, rather than it being a handful of the most popular users.
These nice things said, I don't know if going invite-only was a good choice for the site. Since they're getting a lot of exposure on Hacker News right now (obviously a direct competitor with a lot of traffic) they probably should be using that to their advantage. It's hard for a linking site to start out since they don't have that “critical mass” of readers or traffic that is pushing users out.
I'll be keeping an eye on this one. I particularly enjoy their guidelines:
The List is not for Social media news, Traditional news, Funny images, Angry rants, Advice animals or Linkbait