Quora is taking a step beyond Q&A this morning with its latest product launch, boards. Users can now set up their own personal-themed bookmarking boards, sort of like a Pinterest for text-based information.
Writes Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo in a blog post, “As Quora has grown, we’ve learned that people want to read the most interesting content regardless of whether it happens to be in question and answer format or not.” D’Angelo tells me that this shift fits in better with Quora’s new goal, “to connect you with everything you want to know about.” Its old goal was described as “a continuously improving collection of questions and answers.”
Board onboarding (heh) is easy. Users who want to create a board will now see a “Create a board” option at the top right of Quora and on their header dashboard. Anything can be posted to a board, whether it be links to web content like news and video, images, stuff on Quora like Questions and answers or text commentary. Users can post content directly from Quora by clicking on the ‘Repost’ option under every question.
Board Owners can add Authors and Followers to a board, as well as pay to add Topics. They can also set up the board in a grid or list format. The most interesting feature of boards, from a utility aspect, is that Authors can set up following granularity to public — i.e. everyone who follows the board Author will see content or limited only board followers. Boards will also now show up on Topics pages, as well as on your personal Quora profile page.
Relevant boards will now show up in Quora’s search bar, and boards you are following will show up in your top navigation bar. As Quora has been dogfooding the feature, some robust boards have already been set up, including “The Fourth Wave” (a feminism related board), “All Things J” (A board for Japan-ophiles), “The Quora Blog” (self-explanatory). I’ve also set up my first board,“Epic Internet Content.”
Boards will, D’Angelo and Charlie Cheever hope, cut down on Quora newsfeed clutter, and make it easier for people to curate their Quora experience. But it’s not a pivot says D’Angelo, “We see this as expanding what Quora is. People have their favorite answers. There’s also people who write a lot of stuff and a number of masterpieces. This is a way to bookmark the things that people want to reference a bunch of times.”
Cheever tells me that the Board way of bookmarking is one of the most often requested Quora features, “[Think of this as} a response to that feature request, but on steroids.”