The URL shortening service bit.ly announced Bit.ly Bundles on their blog yesterday. Now, instead of sending one link with a shortened URL, you can send a whole bundle of links.
When you click the bundled link, it opens up in a special Bit.ly Bundles page where you get a rich media preview of every link in the bundle. Here’s an example suggested by bit.ly using this URL: http://bit.ly/9kfiz3. It links to Jauntsetter’s Best of Washington D.C.
This is a way to aggregate, curate, and organize a variety of information on a topic. A bundle of links to your best Thanksgiving recipes, multiple links to the latest announcement from Apple, multiple links to the hottest news in shoelaces – whatever – you get the idea. You click the link, you go the the Bundle page, you choose what you want to read in full.
The Bundle page has a comment box for reactions from people who use the page. And stats showing how many times the page has been viewed.
Nice. Cool, even.
Cool, provided you’re one of the people who don’t mind clicking on shortened URLs. Since a shortened URL doesn’t tell you much about where the link will take you, many people are wary of them. Now the shortened URL can blindside you with even more mystery links. What’s your opinion on that?
How to use it
Want to make a bundle of links?
To make a bit.ly bundle, go to bit.ly and register. It’s free, it’s easy. As a registered user, you can create bundles of links.
Enter your links in a form, then click Bundle. A new page opens where you add titles and other material to your bundle. On this page, you can add or remove links, rearrange links, add titles and descriptions. Then view it or share it. I made a bundle called Places to watch web series programs. Click the link to see the Bundle page. The link I just used is the shortened bit.ly link, which is quick to copy as an option on the bit.ly page. The Share button lets me tweet the link or share to Facebook.
All you need is to register and have an idea for some links you’d like to share in a bundle. Very easy.
The bit.ly bundle page reminds me of what you see when you use paper.li to create a paper from a Twitter list. It’s meant to look good and be engaging. Bit.ly wants you to regard the page as a resource where you’ll stay a while, and perhaps even leave a comment.
What do you think? Are you going to give it a try?
Cross-posted in slightly different form at BlogHer.