Top 20 savvy living stories you missed this year
A look at the 20 stories in 2006 that touched my life in a positive, non-inappropriate kind of way.
Savvy Living Stories From Awesome People
- Hungry for a Month: "How I Ate for $1 a Day" — Learn how this bloger budgeted food costs to $1 per day.
- Where "Check Please" Is Your Call — This restaurant lets you decide how much to pay!
- Nothing New Here — And That's the Point — 10 friends live second hand for a year
- Top 10 Advantages of Low-Rent Living — When it pays to live in low-rent housing.
- You Can Learn a Lot From a Rich Girl — Guerilla tactics for obliterating debt.
- Surprise: Not-So-Glamorous Conservation Works Best — High school teacher reduces electric bill by two-thirds.
Consumer Tips and Protection
- Should You Sign the Backs of Your Credit Cards? — There's a safer way to do it.
- What Is Telstar Logistics? — Urban camouflage lets these guys park anywhere.
Just Plain Cool
- Ten Recurring Economic Fallacies — History repeats itself!
- The High Cost of Being Poor — Food costs, insurance...poverty is expensive.
- Marriage Is for White People — Marriage rates have dropped for the black community.
- Empty Stomach Intelligence — Being hungry makes you smarter.
- Don't Misunderestimate Yourself — Why people think their rivals are better than they actually are.
I hope you enjoy these stories as much as I have. If you feel cheated because you've actually read all these stories before, you should give me a call.
Using Reddit for News
I found all the stories above through reddit, the best social bookmarking community around. I wanted to point that out because it seems that despite the increase of diversity in the blogosphere, a lot of the information is still being channeled through a select group of elite bloggers.
Nielsen BuzzMetrics recently reported that a "small cluster of power bloggers — focused on politics, blogging and humor -— were responsible for the top 100 blog posts for 2006."
If Time magazine is right about the Internet being a "tool for bringing together the small contributions of millions of people and making them matter," then shouldn't more individual blogs be involved too?
This is why reddit is so valuable and why I tell people about it every chance I get (case in point: now). The stories I listed above all made the front page of reddit. And none of them were produced by so-called uber blogs.
Many of the articles I posted are truly grassroots stories that are intensely personal and interesting — and if you weren't reading reddit, you might've missed them.
Reddit vs Digg
Digg is also a great news source but it has a tendency to bury some of the more unique stories. All of the stories on my list were submitted to both Digg and reddit. While all those stories made reddit's front page, many of them languished in Digg obscurity. For example:
Compare that with:
I know this is a very unscientifically small sample, but this was one of the top human interest stories of the year. Leaving it off Digg's home page is like asking Michael Jordan to sit out a couple of All Star games. The $1 a day story did make a splash on Digg a bit later as a repost — 24 days later. Better late than never, I suppose.
I can't tell you why reddit succeeds where Digg has failed. But here's my personal thanks to the reddit team. Please keep that little alien up and running so I can continue to explore all the wonderful complexities of the human experience the blogosphere has to offer.