Sunday, March 20, 2016

Hello Ello!

Wow! It's been an interesting week on Instagram since IG announced they were moving from a chronological feed to an algorithm driven feed. The quilting community on IG has been in an uproar since - signing petitions, boycotting IG with a Silent Sew In on Friday, and then yesterday, a wave of quilters joining Ello.

Ello is an online social networking service similar to Instagram. According to Ello, it is a place where creative people can connect and build communities. Sounds perfect for quilters.

First I have to confess that I don't understand all the ramifications of Instagram going to an algorithm feed much like what Facebook uses. But I do know that I hate how Facebook chooses what I can see on my feed. I miss most of the things I'd really like to see on FB and have used it less and less as a result. I really was excited to find a whole community of quilters on Instagram that I could follow and draw inspiration, ideas and knowledge from. I love the photo-based posting of IG because I am such a visual person. The idea that IG will now choose what I see based on popularity of posts means that I'll lose touch with people I enjoy seeing and as an IG member with a small follower base, I'll probably not show up on many people's feeds either.

So, I decided to check out this new social networking app called Ello that everyone was joining yesterday - including me! And, after 24 hours, here's what I've learned so far.....

The Pros:
  • In many ways, Ello is very similar to Instagram. Above is my bio page on Ello. As you can see, you have a banner photo, profile photo, short bio, website listing, and numbers of followers and following.
  • Unlike Instagram, Ello is committed to not selling ads on the site. Yay! Those ads were showing up more and more frequently on IG.
  • Ello has a chronological feed. No algorithms!
  • On Ello, you can post multiple photos with comments interspersed which gives it more of a blog post feel, I think.
  • You can zoom in on photos! I've always hated not being able to zoom in on photos on IG - not that I'm suggesting that I'm getting older and my eyesight is not as good! Ha!
  • You can also post links!!! Some of my first posts on Ello were posting some of my quilts to give people a taste of me. I was able to share the link to my Chainlinks quilt recipe on the Moda Bake Shop when I posted the photo. Love that.
  • Although I'm a visual person, its kind of handy to be able to make text-only posts like you can on Facebook.
  • You can post on a computer or laptop too, not just on your phone.
  • The biggest pro for me right now is that I'm getting in on the ground floor of this community on Ello. When I joined IG, the quilting community was well established and its been hard to find quilty peeps to follow me. On Ello right now, everyone is searching for friends and it's exciting to be in on this new adventure.
The Cons:
  • It's slow. You get a lot of spinning circles waiting for photos and content to load. Ello is still in Beta mode, so hopefully the speed will improve.
  • The Ello app isn't available for android phones yet. (Although I have an I-phone and this doesn't effect me.) For those with android phones, at least you can go online through your computer for now.
  • The keyboard in the app doesn't have @ and # on the alphabet keyboard so you have to switch back and forth when typing hashtags or tagging someone. What a pain!
  • I'm not leaving Instagram yet, so I will be posting in both IG and Ello. Do I really have time for that? I don't know, time will tell.
I'm still feeling my way around the Ello site and the quilting community on Ello, so I purposely did not make this a how-to post. I'm sure there are other places to get that technical info so just Google it. I haven't done that yet - I'm kind of a jump-in-with-both-feet kind of gal, so I'm paddling through it.

I hope you'll come find me on both Instagram and Ello! (There are links to both of my profiles at the top of this blog in the right-hand column.) I'd love to connect with other quilters. In the meantime, please share any helpful tips you've learned on Ello so far!