Day 7: Catching up after a good weekend
A couple of big scores over the weekend as I got invitations to the Brightkite “private beta” as well as Jaiku. It seems like some of the sites are using Groucho Mark’s logic (ie “I don’t care to belong to a club that accepts people like me as members”) to get you to sign up. Basically you need a friend to recommend you for these sites. It took me about three days to get one for each so how exclusive can they really be?
This is starting to get a little crazy. I’m still using HelloTxt to push my updates to the major sites but otherwise many of them remain unused.
Progress: 34 signups, 66 to go
Eons: The community of baby boomers. OK, technically, I am a baby boomer, but to be honest I still feel like a Gen X’er. I did find 4,717 members in the June new members group. This seems like a really small number to me. It doesn’t look promising for these guys.
Gather: It is a place to collect interesting information (ie articles, photos, videos, etc). You get the idea. Like Eons, it feels like it serves a more mature audience. I also wonder about their long term viability with only 37,676 members.
Brightkite: They promote themselves as a location-based social network. You can check out who is where in real-time. I’m in Somerville, MA during the day and Arlington, MA in the evening. I guess this would be more meaningful if I were in some exotic place like Cambridge with no friends in sight. This would be more relevant if you were a jet setter (like say @limeduck) but is less interesting to a predictable suburbanite like Master Slice.
Stylefeeder: Get shopping recommendations based on interactive ratings. This seems to work alot like the collaborative filtering sites that were prevalent in the early days of Web 1.0 (ah, they were heady times). It is great to see some ideas never die – they just get a crunchy coating of Web 2.0 goodness and a hefty dollop of VC money with each new Web X.0 bubble.
Xanga: They describe themselves as a community to start your own weblog, share photos and upload videos. And get this – you can meet new friends here too! Am I repeating myself?
Utterz: Tell your story from your cellphone in the form of an Uttercast. I can see the point of this when I don’t have time for a proper blog post or want to make a quick point. My guess is that I will come back to this site after I complete this inane journey.
Wis.dm: My friend is the former head of product development for Wis.dm. He explained that they are looking for the post-Facebook crowd. It seems like a narrow band of users between Facebook and Eons.
Jaiku: Acquired by Google, this Finnish microblogging site has a big following outside the US. I hooked up my updates from HelloTxt and have one friend so far. We’ll see who else contacts me now that I’m here. I don’t have many friends in Finland so I’m not holding my breath.
Stumbleupon: This site plus plug-in discovers (suggests) sites based on your interests. It also claims to “learn what you like” (this means track my traffic patterns). This feels a little like some early Web 1.0 products. I didn’t install the plug-in yet but will likely add it to my fresh Firefox 3 installation.
Blogged: Three words: Ffnd better blogs. Say no more.
Newsvine: Seems like a cross between Digg and Netvibes. I get the module layout and the ability to vote for articles. In the end, my friends are on Digg and I like Netvibes so it seems redundant.
More tomorrow. There seems to be plenty left to signup for before they end up in the Techcrunch Deadpool. Onward and upward.