"Make no little plans. They have no magic to stir men's blood and probably will not themselves be realized."
It was famed Chicago-based architect Daniel Burnham who said those words, and it's a quote many Chicagoans know and love. History is full of memorable sentiments like this one, spoken and written by authors and musicians, business magnates and celebrities. The Internet is a great place to find favorites, old and new. We've all come across that Twitter feed comprised of nothing but one famous quote after the next...and been surprised by its number of followers. The fact is that people respond to bite-sized content. Quotes are neat and to the point, perfect for sharing online.
Digital publishers know this well, but until recently there wasn't much emphasis placed on making quotes from online articles and stories easy to tweet or post to a blog. Not so anymore. Last week The New York Times began testing a new feature that will allow readers to share on Twitter specific quotations and sentences from within the body of a story. With a single click on the highlighted text, the snippet becomes a tweet complete with a link to the article in full.
The Times isn't the first publication to explore the idea of letting consumers play with quotes as content. Digital news outlet Quartz, owned by Atlantic Media Co., recently launched a feature that lets readers annotate parts of articles and places their comments in the margin next to the quote or paragraph to which it applies. Publishing platform Medium, created last year by the founders of Twitter, does something similar by allowing readers to log in through Twitter and reply to bits and pieces of its stories. For now (the site is still in beta) comments are only visible to the author, but he or she can choose to make them public.
There's also Tumblr, which has a quotation feature in its online share tool that lets users create a blog post from any quote. Just highlight the desired quote within the article, and click the Share on Tumblr button. Tumblr will automatically credit and link to the online source.
If being perceived as a resource for interesting content is among your social media goals, or you just enjoy sharing good stuff with friends, curate quotes online. There's no shortage of succinct remarks worthy of knowing. And you can quote me on that.