Looking back at lessons learned from community portals (2005) I would say that the transactional portal is the only one that still makes any sense to me:
Transactional: sites which are accessible, complete, thoughtful, and coherent; and with more than one type of on-line interaction (e.g. payment, application, consultation, bookings).
RSS has blown up the content-only portal funded through advertising but the wide adoption of Twitter is giving content publishers a new push mechanism to get eyeballs to their sites. I don’t follow anyone on Twitter who only publish their recent blog posts, that’s what a feed reader is for. However, some people may prefer getting updates via Twitter. I wonder if this will significantly change the use and utility of RSS?
Back to portals. I’ve found that checking out the various portal/community sites that I belong to is rather tedious and am consciously avoiding requests to join more communities. Not sure if community portal overload syndrome is widespread but I think there’s a sea change happening. Are central portals dying, seeing a resurgence or best left for internal organizational use? I’ve noticed that proprietary portal software is still being sold for lots of money and there are several strong open source projects available too.
Are portals old tech or still a solid way to support communities and various types of online transactions?
Photo by yewenyi