Customer Reviews: Curation Nation: How to Win in a World Where Consumers are Creators
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on March 16, 2011
Curation Nation could use some curation itself. The book contains a lot of information, but it doesn't really say anything. The first 100 pages summary: there is a lot of crap on the Internet and it needs to be curated... I know that already, that's why I bought your book!

It goes on to profile different acts of curation such as the Huffington Post, aggregation through twitter, blogging, etc. Nothing really jaw dropping. Don't expect a unique insight here. Chapter 4 says don't piss of your consumers with crappy customer service because they have a voice now...this book was published in 2011 right? Do people/companies not know this by now? Did we really need a whole chapter on this?

The book's plea is "attention is the new economy." I partly agree with this, but don't expect this book to give any spectacular information on how to turn that attention into a tangible profit making business. While the book's purpose is not solely making money off of curation, it does suggests more of a "build it and they shall come" strategy hoping for your attention to somehow be monetized later through advertisers. If that floats your boat, this book may be for you.

Curation Nation contains thoughts from notable figures such as Clay Shirky, Alan Webber, Robert Scoble, Andrew Keen, Seth Godin, Mark Cuban, and others. Unfortunately none of the interviews led you the reader to know where curation is headed...all they know is we need it. Again, I know we need it, that's why I bought this book for some direction and to help make sense of it all. Ughhh

Alan Webber perhaps gives the best quote from the book: "Nobody has figured out a killer model of what exactly is exciting about a wonderfully produced movie, magazine, book, or record. Creating unique, memorable content isn't a formula -it's a happy accident. In the same way publishers struggle to figure out curation, there will be few leaders and lots of followers searching for the future economic model for content."

Curation Nation is for the lowest common denominator who are absolutely clueless that there is too much unfiltered information online and that it needs to be sorted. It will fill you in, provide you with a history of how we got here (unnecessary to the book) and where we currently are with no breathtaking insights. You'll get a bunch of information, but again, the book doesn't say much other than we need curation.

With the text being 259 Pages, it could have been cut AT LEAST in half. The future of curation fascinates me very much and I wanted to like this book. I expected this book to be GREAT judging by all the big name endorsements...but sadly I was let down.

P.S. If you happen to stumble across this book in the bookstore, just skip to the'll get all you need to know about the book saving you time in our limited "attention based economy."
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VINE VOICEon April 4, 2011
Curation Nation is a solid read on the subject of curation overall.

It is NOT for people who publish and curate content on a regular basis IMO. It is for people who are considering a start in content publishing and curation.

The book seems to "go all over the place", covering the topic completely, but lacking organization in terms of leading a reader from point A to point B on the topic.

The author is well-versed on the topic, and the information is solid...but I will be searching for other books on the subject as a content publisher myself.
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on March 24, 2011
I'd like to start by saying that the author clearly has a passion and vast knowledge of the subject. He is the right author for a book on curation and has a lot of great contacts to source information from. However...

Curation Nation starts in an odd fashion, even by just looking at the cover. This book has two tag lines - "Why The Future of Content is Context" and "How to Win in a World Where Consumers are Creators". The most apt title title is the first. It is a 'why' book. But the reason you'd buy this book and the larger weighted subtitle is the second, which really isn't accurate at all. This is not a how to book, Steven even says so in reply to a review here on Amazon... "But it's not a how-to book".

The book falls foul of it's own subject. The book is poorly organised. The first quarter moves rapidly from introduction, to customer service, to how-to then general social media information. The rest of the book is just variations of 'Curation is important'. Which it is, but I'd suggest many of the actions Steve calls Curation (which involves adding value) are not.

The most interesting chapter is 'tools and techniques', but it is short and low on information. An opportunity to get the new curator started is lost as the book goes on to feature famous old media person after famous old media person who bought their way into new media.

Steven then goes on to attack search. "Search is broken. It's over. Done. Gone". Yet the examples he provides makes little sense. Why is it even in the book? Is search really considered a threat?

The book is also full of grammatical and spelling errors, the type of which a spell checker wouldn't pick up but a proof reader would have. Very odd.

I feel sad to give this only 2 stars considering the passion that went into it. This could have been a really good book had it focused on the 'how-to' and provided people the tools and techniques to get going. Instead it's just convincing readers of something they already know.
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on June 29, 2011
An OK book marred by lots of typos, dropped words, misplaced words, grammatical errors, and other editorial blunders. I counted a dozen in the first 70 pages alone. Shame on the author and the publisher, McGraw-Hill. I was also left wanting more information on how to monetize curation, which -- let's face it -- is what we're all after.
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I was excited to read this book. As a content marketing strategist, I'm hungry for the latest word about content. I quickly lost interest in this book after the first few chapters.

There were a few new things that I learned from this book. I especially enjoyed:

**The history of content curation. As an avid reader and library user, I enjoyed reading about the origins of the Dewey Decimal System. Rosenbaum considers the Dewey System to be one of the original curation systems.

**How humans can manage the tsunami of content today. We need to use both technology and human intervention.

What missed the mark for me with this book:

**The seemingly endless examples. Of course, it's good to back up statements with facts, but this book was more a recitation of facts, without any deep thought behind it. I guess you could say this book was a curation of curation.

**I didn't think there were any new ideas presented in this book. It's merely a recitation of facts.

**The use of the term "curation" to mean a catch all for any content. Steven talks about blogging, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Are these things content curation or content creation?

If you want to learn more about Content Management and Content Strategy, I would recommend other books and resources.

Some good books:

Kristina Halvorsen's book, "Content Strategy for the Web." Kristina not only talks about Content Strategy, but gives the reader concrete tactics on how to create and execute strategy.

David Meerman Scott's, "The New Rules of Marketing & PR: How to Use Social Media, Online Video, Mobile Applications, Blogs, News Releases, and Viral Marketing to Reach Buyers Directly." David gives clear cut ways to create and manage content.
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on August 14, 2012
What a disappointment!

I purchased the book, read the first 3rd,skimmed the rest and then asked Amazon for a refund. I am a content strategist and have been wary of content curation as I create all our own original content. I like the idea of curation and thought that an expert with a substantial book of 300 pages would provide valuable content on how to curate content, legitimately.

This appears to be a history book on the journey of content creation. Maybe as a textbook it would be of some use. Basically he says a lot about nothing. With the recognised endorsements by field leaders in content creation I assumed it would be like their practical books. Not so. There is almost nothing in the 300 pages that gives practical how-to on content curation.

I have been given a sketchy understanding of what it is, who the opponents are and why librarians hold on to their titles as curaters. I come away with the understanding of how important it is and that search engines are broken but what is the practical solution for doing it?

I immediately think of multilevel marketing where information is sketchy about how to do it successfully. As I turned each page I was hoping for basic clues on how to do it but all I got was stories and stories and stories. It jumps all over the place and does not provide a cohesive thread that leads anywhere. The grammatical and spelling errors hint at a book launched too soon.

I was enthusiastic on buying it but gradually my enthusiasm waned when gradually I lost hope that I would find anything practical. I think you can cut out the 100 page indtroduction and reduce the price by half and still have a book without much substance.

A last question. Is he buddies with MS Huffington?
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on March 24, 2011
Curation is becoming a critical aspect of our online world. I know from years of being involved in online marketing and studying search engines that the search engines simply cannot keep up. It looks like they are, because if you ask for something, you get 10 results, a few of them good. But they're probably not the best results out there. We take what we get.

Curators will help fix this. Not only will we, as consumers of content, rely on the curators to show us the truly good information (with color), but the search engines will also rely on them as at least one of the many signals that indicate what belongs at the top of search results.

Online curation is something that I've been involved in for a long time now both in the publisher sense that Robert Scoble puts it: "Pick a niche and own it." as well as someone who is developing the tools that curators will use to own their own niches.

As someone who likes to curate, and loves the concept, I read as much as I can from the people who do nothing but think about this stuff all day every day. Steve Rosembaum is one of those guys. The people that Steve taps into for this book are those guys.

The criticism that this book could have been shorter and more organized is valid. Just the same, it is a valuable brain dump from one of the guys who is well in front of this important topic. It is full of insight and was well worth the read. I pulled dozens of quotes to share with my team to help solidify our own vision.
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on July 25, 2011
The first few chapters of this book are interesting and thought provoking. The author asserts that (1) there is too much information on the Internet, and (2) people need curators to sort through the crap. He describes a few interesting examples and case studies.

After the first few chapters, it feels like the author needed to produce a lot more words to justify publishing a book. The book becomes repetitive and uninformative.

I paid the cover price for this book at a local bookstore. Unfortunately, I wish that I had read the first few chapters in the store instead.
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on June 4, 2012
I confess, I am a content curator. Maybe 5% of what I put out on the web is my own content - book reviews. The rest is material gleaned from 620 + RSS feeds I review five days a week.. I share about 20 items each day - which are queued up in Hootsuite so one goes out every few hours. In my online travels I may post another half a dozen immediate tweets/G+ posts of things that are relevant to me in my "collecting" of items on sales and marketing "today".

Rosenbaum goes into some detail about how the firehose of content needs to be curated - so you can pick and choose what is relevant to your interests/uses. There are people who are doing that , Scoble, Kawasaki, Huffington Post. Others rail against repurposing of content, eg Mark Cuban.

Who could benefit from this book? Marketers, authors, journalists and anyone who proposes to be a content authority. More of a whats happening vs what to do about it book, the insights are valuable. I believe him when he points out several business models that can spring from these ideas.
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on March 8, 2013
The phrase "content curation" is a big buzz word these days and I get it. I'm into curating as an act of filtering, archiving, organizing, adding context, and sharing the best content I come across...but that's not enough.

Fortunately, Steve came along to illustrate how I can apply a curator's mentality beyond the online space and beyond what we consume for our business needs. At first I thought this book was just one intriguing case study after another. But after finishing the book, I could see the unifying threads that ran through the premise of Curation Nation. I could see why Steve proposes the types of solutions to resolve 21st century issues of information overwhelm and finding meaning in a sea of crappy resources.

I'm interested in curating as a business model and also applying the curator's mindset to every aspect of my life. This book gave me motivation and tools to become a smarter and more efficient curator in many facets of my existence, not just the business side. I'd love to see a follow up to this book where Steve expands upon the framework he's built to talk about more than just trends and what other people have to say on the topic. Doing all the research and interviews he did to add value from all these super awesome people was great, but I'm most interested in what Steve specifically has to say.

If you want to get introduced to the major players in the world of curation though, look no further than this book. Steve has access to the thoughts and words of some great folks and, by reading this book, you'll have concise and powerful access to them as well.
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