With all of the different ways to be social on the web, one of the things you may not think of sharing is your documents and presentations. I was surprised there are as many sites out there offering just such a service. When I really thought about it, it makes a lot of sense. These sites are they are like Youtube or Vimeo for documents.
Like many other types of social sites, these document sharing sites have the same basic idea to them; post all of your documents and presentations for all to see. Large companies like Ford use these sites to share fact sheets and marketing PDFs. They can be a really great place to research a topic or get ideas for a project you you may be stuck on.
Some of the sites offer the option to buy documents such as contracts, invoices and even ebooks. I noticed, while perusing through some of the sites, quite a few publishers and online magazines have accounts.
1. Doc Share
Doc Share offers a great variety of documents to view and download. Four categories (Business and Legal, eBooks, Essays or Guides and Instructions) make finding the type of document you are looking for easier, While these categories are fairly broad, they do help narrow your search.
The Social Part
You can give “kudos” up or down similar to Reddit or Stumbleupon. Of the three, Doc Share seems a little more laid back. When I went to the site for the first time, one of the recently added documents on the homepage was song lyrics and another was celebrity mug shots. The layout is a bit bland too.
2. Doc Stoc
Doc Stoc has millions of documents, both pay and free, in an easy to use layout. The layout is a little more categorized than others making it much easier to sift through the myriad of shared documents. (*note – while writing this post, I found A LOT of spam documents on this site. They were really easy to spot though.)
The Social Part
If you find something you like, you can save it to a folder. These don’t need to be files you have uploaded, anything on the site can saved. What I have used this particular site for in the past is finding great templates or inspirational presentations.
Of the three, this seems to be the least social on-site. It has basic sharing options like a Twitter button and you can embed a document into your site. To me, this one feels more like going to the library versus a Barnes and Noble or used bookstore.
Scribd seems to be the most hip site of the three. They overhauled the site this past summer and added all kinds of features. Simple things like signing in with your Facebook info or Open ID show these guys are a bit more in-tune with whats going on.
There are plenty of categories to help narrow your searches. In addition to categories, the community tab lets you search for popular people you may want to follow.
The Social Part
This is the most social of the three. Scribd lets subscribe to other peoples feeds. You can update your on-site status with what you are reading by pasting a link to the document you are reading or publishing. This update is called a “Scribble”.
If you come across a presentation you want your Facebook or Twitter followers to know about, you have the buttons share. Others are also available along with the the code to embed it into your site.
How do social document site help you share your documents with your other communities?
image credit: Saxoji