I always had an open door policy and kept my tribe healthy by encouraging reciprocation. Some members lost interest and left. Others who did not want to spam their Twitter followers also left. Back then it cost "bones" to invite a member who was already in Triberr. They called it inbreeding. Even though chiefs had to purchase bones, it was a good system because people would think before inviting someone to their tribe. Tribes were also capped at thirty members.
In September, the bone system was discontinued. Suddenly you can invite people without cost. A Prime membership was created where chiefs could have tribes with up to 150 members. Predictably, an invitation explosion ensued. People I didn't know were inviting me. I was inviting others I didn't know. A new feature called "Follower" status was introduced. This allowed people to lurk outside of the tribe, share the posts, and ask to gain membership.
Is this a good thing? If I look at stats I could be thrilled. I went from:
But along the way, I lost my sense of community. My stream became clogged with new faces and new people. I diligently checked out their blogs and shared their posts. I dialed my share schedule to the maximum allowed (3 posts an hour). Do the math! 3 posts an hour = 72 posts a day maximum. I now have 269 tribemates. Some of them post multiple times a day. Everytime I log on, my stream is full and I'm always behind.
Some of my tribemates have time sensitive posts, a giveaway or free event. This could get lost in the queue and not sent until days into the future. With the pile of unsent but approved posts, Triberr's database became overloaded. They started aging out posts, dumping packets into the bit bucket. I started missing my initial tribemates' posts only to find them gone by the time I got to it.
The intimate small tribe had grown into a communal hive. I no longer had time to visit and comment, just click, approve, click, approve. And what happened to my twitter feed? goo.gl, goo.gl, goo.gl ... ad nauseum.
The million dollar question - Did you blog hits improve?
No! Even with the increased tribemates, increased sharing and 24 by 7 posts, my blog pageviews did not increase like they did when I first joined Triberr. My Alexa rating is still in the 360,000 range, and I did not see an increase in average pageviews.
Why is that? Simple. My tribemates were also on overload. They could not keep up with the multitude, the flood, the deluge of posts. Their queues were backed up and posts were dropped after five days. And now that Triberr has instituted a daily 100 post limit (still > 72/daily potential), even more of my blog posts will submerge into the ocean of timed-out posts.
What to do?
I'm taking back my tribal roots. Triberr has always had a "Filter" feature. I had always set it to "Show All Tribes." Because I am now limited to 100 posts a day, I will start with the posts from my two personal tribes: "Indie Authors" and "Writer's Karma." I will get in as many posts as I can of my other tribes and pay attention to the reciprocality statistic. Those who have shared more will be shared first. Then the folks I'm even with. If this doesn't work, I will drop out of tribes until I get my tribemate number down to where it is manageable.
So that's my Triberr story. What about you? Do you like the new changes? The supertribes? Are you a paying Prime member? What do you think of the impersonal automatic sharing feature? And is all of this defeated when you can only share 72 posts a day?