WordPress.com launched a new notification feature today for logged-in users. A box in the upper right corner of the toolbar now notifies WordPress bloggers when someone follows their blog or likes a post. It also allows the user to follow back those fans right from the toolbar.
This feature replicates the new, ubiquitous Google+ toolbar pretty audaciously. The only difference is that the WordPress notification badge is orange, whereas Google's is red. Is this formula really the best way to increase engagement, or whatever it is these free social services are trying to make us do?
Only likes and follows are included in WordPress notifications so far, and it only shows the most recent nine entries. The announcement says it will show blog comments in the future, as well as a way to navigate to the full list of past notifications.
Notifications on social networks can be a pain for power users, and WordPress.com has launched its toolbar notifications without a way to manage them. "For those of you who are so popular that you get new followers and likes every few minutes," the announcement says, "we're already thinking about ways to help you manage and limit the flow activity." In other words, there isn't a way yet.
Users will start seeing these notifications next time they get followed or liked.
WordPress Wants To Be More Social
Several WordPress.com updates this year have pushed more social features on users. The comment panel was updated to show the most active posts and commenters. WordPress also added 'Follow' buttons and subscription widgets to its Web and Android apps, following suit after competitor Posterous rearranged its whole service around similar subscription options. Tumblr, which had this kind of sticky following and notifications from the get-go, crushes its competitors in traffic.
How do you feel about the amount of notifications you get on a daily basis?