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Bitly News Tries To Create A Hacker News For The Rest Of Us

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What are the headlines people are sharing the most? A new headline aggregation site called Bitly News tries to answer that by showing the most clicked-on shortened bit.ly links on Twitter. Bitly News is not an official bit.ly product. It is an independent hack by Jeff Miller built on top of both the bit.ly and Twitter APIs. (John Borthwick, CEO of both bit.ly and betaworks, just mentioned the site on-stage at SAI’s Ignition conference as an example of somebody using bit.ly’s APIs). With billions of shared bit.ly links every month, there is a pretty broad reach of links to mine.

Bitly News is modeled on Hacker News, the headline news site for developers. The site only shows headlines and where they come from in rank order. Each headline links directly to the original story. Under each headline you can see how many times it’s been clicked on and when it was posted. You can comment on Bitly News or click through to bit.ly to see more stats for that headline.

The default view shows the most popular stories right now, but you can also see the newest stories which are trending. The stories are all over the map. Some of the top ones right now are: “Nasa Finds New Life Form” on Wired News, “Cake Wrecks: Happy Hannu…Channa…Festival of Lights” on Cake Wrecks, and “Police Investigate Murder In Disney-Developed Town.” on CNN.

It is a little too broad for my taste: the equivalent of the most popular videos on YouTube. If Bitly News could segment the top headlines by topic (politics, tech, national, world, sports, entertainment), I’d find it more useful. What do you think?

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