I think by rolling out the top stories change to Oppo last week, you have shot yourself in the foot. In this evaluation I will explain why:
I hope you are monitoring the click activity well, because I predict it dropping as a result. No longer can you look to the left to see not only what has been FP'ed, but also posts that are gaining traction with views and replies. As with anything, I don't see anyone going to the second or third pages to see what they have missed in the last few hours. Now all we have is stuff that is wildly good, as in the Blackbird article, but everyone has read it twice or more, and we have stuff that has been shared on the front page. This might push off anyone who is an author as well because you spend all the time writing, and you get very little traction. Daswauto, davesaddiction and myself are still curating OppositeBlog, which I think is a bit of a stopgap, but not a final solution. We don't catch ALL the good and worthy posts you guys make, but we are trying.
I believe there can be some common ground. I like the rendering of the top stories how it has been rolled out, but with the amount of content that is being created, 3 is too little an number of top stories to have there. So maybe we can have the old style top stories on the left below the fold, and the top 3 have the visual appeal of the update? Or call me crazy, but we have enough talent on Oppo alone to rewrite the algorithm and display the feed and have it be a Kinja sandbox if you will. I am formally throwing my hat in the ring. I think you need some actionable click data to go on and for this reason you should let the changes settle a few weeks, but on the back end we should get a crew together to make some wonderful stuff happen from Oppo that can be used across all of Kinja for the betterment of the platform, and of course to inspire more people to author here and elsewhere and be confident they are getting the most of posting here rather than elsewhere. What do you think Oppo/Kinja tech? I am not knocking what you have done, but I think it could be a boon to traffic to try and appease all - the authors, the mods, the paid authorship, and all of Gawker.
Who is with me?