I’m a content curator and didn’t even know it.

I must officially live under a rock. I had never heard the term content curation until today. But as it turns out, I’m already a content curator. I just didn’t know it. As a somewhat opinionated research and news junkie, I’ve apparently been curating content for years.

You see, anyone who has shared and commented on information from the web has been a content curator.  If you too are new to the term, allow me to present the basics on what content curation is. According to Wikipedia, content curation is “the process of collecting, organizing and displaying information relevant to a particular topic or area of interest.”

There’s a ton of information on the web about content curation: benefits, strategies, tools, and tips. Almost too much. Interestingly enough, one of the biggest challenges of content curation is the sheer volume of information that is available to us. And it just keeps on coming.

Another more subtle challenge is making sense of the content you curate — defining its relevance to your audience and contextualizing it. Anyone can regurgitate information, but it takes a skilled content curator to (as content curation expert, Robin Good says) “show what is otherwise not visible” through valuable insight and observation.

Nonprofit social media blogger, Beth Kanter, commented on what content curation isn’t. It is not about “collecting links or being an information pack rat, it is more about putting them into a context with organization, annotation, and presentation.”

And another useful perspective from Constant Contact blogger Erica Ayotte:

“By making the Internet smaller, focusing our attention, providing context, and creating relevant experiences, curators actually enhance our online experiences.”

So if you happen to live under a rock like me, or just want to learn more about content curation, don’t overwhelm yourself. Here are two good places to start: Curata’s Resources Page and Robin Good’s website, Content Curation World.

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