On the Web, there are three types of downtime - one being that you are overloaded with traffic and can't respond to requests, the second being for scheduled maintenance, and the third, when new products are being introduced. If The Apple Store is down, herds of Macophiles jump into a tissy, and last night, Technorati followed YouTube's footsteps by taking the entire site down to launch the anticipated WTF feature, standing for "Where's The Fire"?
Though the site's frequent instability still causes me concern, the WTF feature shows Technorati is trying to capitalize on the details they have on the blogosphere's tendencies to link and talk about specific topics in near real-time. Just as Google Reader announced Trends, based on the data they had on its customers, Technorati is similarly expanding their feature set, due to their database's detail.
The company's CEO, David Sifry, explains the introduction, saying, "WTF is a big experiment; we're entrusting the most valuable real estate to you - our community - and we think it's going to be a powerful way to make Technorati more useful to you."
This explanation further pushes the blog search site into the user-generated content realm that is so hot in the social networking space these days. I guess one of the first things that will debut in WTF is WTF itself.
Good luck, Technorati. We'll be watching to see if WTF stands for "What Technical Foundation?" or "Wow, They Fixed it!"
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