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Bubblews - just another social media site?
What is Bubblews?
Bubblews is an online platform from which to publish your writing, you are encouraged to speak freely and write your word. It is a community lead site where you can write articles and publish them and your main audience will be via the connections you make with other users. Other users then click on your articles and can comment, like or dislike your work, and you earn revenue through advertising.
I didn't know about Bubblews until I read an article on Hubpages about it a few weeks ago, the reviews and comments were mixed but I was intrigued so thought I'd give it a go. The major complaints seemed to be about redeeming, or delays in getting paid, but nevertheless I thought I'd take a look. On first impression it's not that great, I think it looks cheap and isn't easy to navigate, but when I first joined HubPages it was nowhere near as sophisticated as it is now - although early HubPages still blows today's Bubblews out of the water - but I was willing to cut it some slack and see what all the fuss was about.
I joined Bubblews a few weeks ago and have so far published a few articles and made a few dollars, but I can't help but wonder about the longevity of this site. Is it the place to find good quality, well written, unique and engaging content or is it the place to find out that someone really likes mango? It turns out one user really does like mango, a lot - well enough to bumble on in broken English for two short paragraphs about it, and he got over 50 comments from other users about mango. I wonder how much he earned from that?
I published a few articles, writing about my day to day and commenting on social issues currently trending. Yes, the click count goes up quicker than HubPages and therefore so does the $ count, however who is reading my content? I have been doing research for a couple of ideas I have for articles, and have used Google extensively, and not once has a Bubblews article popped up in a relevant search. I've not been searching the obscure, but very much the mainstream, and Bubblews content does not come up.
How is it different to HubPages?
Here at HubPages you can also make connections, follow other writers who engage you with their content. You can comment and connect with like minded people and through our community we can keep an eye on substandard content and make sure that it does not sully our site and therefore our work.
HubPages is social, its fun and a great place to visit and yes, you can make money here, no one is going to get rich, but you can be paid for your work.
Over on Bubblews it seems to me that anything goes, yes there are rules such as minimum character counts and you must publish unique original work if you want to be able to redeem, but mostly I see a desperation to make money by the users and so far I haven't read one well written and engaging article.
What are the top selling articles? "How to make money on Bubblews" or 'I just got my payment" or "I have redeemed five times this month". These titles entice people to click, and through clicks comes revenue and more connections, and because you earn from any click, even dislikes, you can make some money... and connections... and therefore money.
What do other Bubblers or prospective Bubblers want to know about? How to make money, and so they read articles about how to make money, and wham bam the author then gets paid. It's not rocket science, people are trying to find more and more ways to earn money and are turning to the internet in increasing numbers. Some users have done nothing other than publish over and over again about how may times they have redeemed that month thus garnering more and more clicks. This isn't good equality writing, its blabbering over and over again about the same thing, suckering people in with your title "Yay I've redeemed $400 in the last 2 weeks" and people will click because they hope you will share your secret and they can do the same.
The same thing does happen on HubPages, lots of people write about how to make money on here or their success, but when you come across one of the success stories they are generally good stand alone pieces of writing. They have really great tips and advice, and yes they do get readers because new members of our community want to learn and see if HubPages is for them. At least the Hub articles are, generally, engaging and interesting as well as inspiring and educational, whereas on Bubblews they just seem to be users shouting form the rooftop about how much money they've made and in turn making more.
Bubblews Twitter V's HubPages Facebook
I think its just another social media platform and not a place for genuine writers to publish work. It's a bit like Twitter, a connection is like a follow, each time that connection publishes you are notified through your profile and hopefully you will drop by and take a look. I have had people come via my profile and be very nice, say hi and ask me how I am today but ultimately by being connected with them they home that everything they publish will show up on my profile and that I'll click on it, thus making them money.
The minimum character count is 400 and so I thought this site would lend itself to shorter musings about the world around me, and maybe that's what makes Bubblews the Twitter against HubPages Facebook. Perhaps that's why I don't like it, I've never been a fan of Twitter, I find it to be the social media shortcut platform, short rants and txt speak where at least on Facebook you can use full words and proper grammar without going over a maximum word count. I also find that Twitter is the home of celebrity whereas Facebook is more familial, perhaps this is what Bubblews should become, the place for someone famous to rant for a litter longer than they can on Twitter.
How does the site look?
Bubblews isn't easy on the eye, it's basic and yet confusing all at once. It has no real appeal when you visit and I don't think it engages a visitor as quality writing is hard to come by in the first few clicks and you are bombarded by dodgy ads. The only thing that may make people linger a little longer is the trending "how to make money" on Bubblews articles in the last weeks top scorers.
The Ads are everywhere and in no way subtle, and this is what also cheapens the site. We all know that we make money on HubPages via the advertising programme but at least the ads are relevant to our writing and do not overwhelm and detract from the article itself.
It doesn't look professional
The photo upload sizes (1MB) are too small for good quality original images and there are no formatting choices available. How can you make interesting articles more engaging to your audience whiteout these basic tools?
It's not for me
It may be for some but its not for me. I like the way my work is presented on HubPages and I'm not here to make millions, I just enjoy writing and want to get better at it. Perhaps in time Bubblews will get better, maybe I've not given it enough of a chance, but for now HubPages is the only online publishing platform for me.
I do think that it is another glorified social media site where total strangers can connect, write whatever they like, and earn a few dollars here and there from advertising revenue - if only Facebook would share their revenue, I think we'd all do quite well out of that!