Robert Scoble has pretty much stopped blogging (Mercifully? Ok, that was unnecessary, and I don't even mean that), as he seems to spend most of his time chatting with people on FriendFeed. And when he does blog, he usually writes about FriendFeed. Anyway, the big bitch on FriendFeed is that it adds a lot to noise, and people don't need more of that.
In a recent post, Scoble defends noise, and he actually makes a good point:
I’m a noise junkie. I used to be a news junkie, but I’ve hung out with the world’s top journalists enough now to see that the good ones are noise junkies. They are the types that head into a crowded party and listen to pitch after pitch (noise) and drunken story after drunken story (noise) to find something that their audiences will find interesting (news).
He's actually sort of right. Right now there are pretty much two ways of filtering noise. You can get your news from reputable sources (WSJ, NYT) or you can use some sort of social filter (Techmeme, Digg, etc.). And as much as I love WSJ, NYT and rely on Techmeme for work (not Digg -- it's annoying), none of those are good sources for undiscovered jewels of stories. It's just not going to happen. If you get your news from sources that turn up stuff based on what's popular, the content will usually be, well, bland.
It's something I've talked about before, and frankly I'm on a bit of a kick. There's gotta be a way to find interesting gems in the noise that aren't based on social filtering and/or reputation. I'm just not sure what that is. And listening to 21,000 folks' twitter streams doesn't seem particularly effective either.