Less is More, at least on MacRumors

MacRumors.com has developed a unique culture over the years, which is a product of its primary author (myself), I suppose.

MacRumors was never all about the rumors, but clearly, that’s been a big focus of the site. In the early days, rumors were shunned by the mainstream media. This was before blogs took off, and Apple rumors became regular CNBC content.

Instead, there used to be a couple of established rumor sites, and then there was the mainstream Mac web. And apple rumors would never be published on the mainstream Mac web. This all changed in the past few years, seemingly around the time that Apple sued ThinkSecret and subpoenaed several rumor sites. It’s hard to say whether this legitimization of rumor sites contributed to rumors jumping into the mainstream, or if it would have happened anyway.

Regardless, as blogs have become more mainstream, there’s a few gadget sites (Gizmodo and Engadget) which have grown an enormous audience. I’ve personally found the most curious part of their success is the sheer volume of updates. It’s not uncommon for them to have 50-100 posts in one day. Is their traffic simply a side-product of having so many pages for people to view? Or do people really want this much content? Even if some of it, is… well, less than interesting.

MacRumors has always been more of a quality over quantity site. Early on, this was easy, since Apple news and rumors tended to come a little slower than they do these days. This was also because I was never a full-time blogger, so by necessity, I couldn’t update as often.

Recently, I thought, would MacRumors benefit from much more frequent updates? In the end, the answer seems to be “no”. As a side effect of the all my efforts over the years, the site has drawn a certain audience. And a few vocal ones have made it clear that they want quality over quantity and relevant topics on the front page of MacRumors. The front page is also seen as somewhat sacred — with strong objections when seeminglly “unworthy” content appears on it. I realize that this is a direct result of how I’ve treated the front page… protecting it from throw-away stories as much as possible.

I also believe you shouldn’t lose your focus and turn away from your core audience. MacRumors has grown to be the largest Mac news or rumor site on the internet, and I believe the current format has contributed to that growth. I do have plans to expand content and add features over time, but in a way that preserves the essence of MacRumors.

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2 Responses to Less is More, at least on MacRumors

  1. Jake says:

    Macrumors is a different sort of site. gizmodo and engadget are blogs in the more common sense of the word: authors post opinions, humor, news and commentary — I think that’s why the frequent posts work. Sure, much of the news is stupid and you could do without it, but you read it because there’s more than just news. Macrumors is much more straight forward and to the point than the above-mentioned sites. I like it how it is. Few posts, relevant stories. If I were to change anything to the site, I’d just modernize the design, but that’s not super-important.

  2. martin says:

    Well said. Macrumors is a great site and I always come here for ease of use and quality, rather than reading through hundreds of rubbish articles to find the good stuff. Macrumors filters this for me – only the good stuff (mostly) makes the front page.

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