Archive for February, 2006

Can Facebook be beaten?

February 27, 2006

I just read an interesting post over at GigaOm titled “Can Myspace be beaten?”. I’ve kept a close eye on the various social network plays over the past year since i’ve been working on a “social network aggregator” with a couple of other people. MySpace and Facebook continue to amaze me in how rapidly they have acheived mass adoption, and that too by the highly coveted teen and young adult market.

Since the guys over at GigaOm are attacking the MySpace question, I thought I’d give some insights about the Facebook question; can it be beaten by another college oriented social network?

I made my conclusion to this question a year ago when a friend and I were working on another start-up. a college oriented social network based around the buying and selling of things such as textbooks, movies, music, games, etc. One of the main reasons I decided to leave this start-up was because I firmly believed that Facebook could not be beaten since it had accumulated too much momentum. It was (and still is) amassing students at a faster rate than we could dream of ever having on our own site, and with every new student it signed up, its stranglehold on the college social network market only got more impossible to break. In hindsight, my decision to step away from the startup was a good one because Facebook has only gotten stronger: it has since raised $12.7M from one of the top VCs, it has moved into the mecca of tech that is Silicon Valley, has 75 people on its payroll, and has many more millions of users.

Regardless of all these happenings, a recent entrant named Xuqa has come onto the scene, also with VC backing, to challenge the incumbent for the throne. I still think that Facebook cannot be beaten, not because it has a better product than Xuqa (indeed Xuqa is more in tune with Web 2.0; whether this is a good or bad thing is left for another post), but because it still has too much momentum, it’s still too “cool” to be part of the Facebook craze. This however is a double-edged sword for Facebook; many college students still retain the “follow the leader” mentality that is common in highschool. If the “popular” people start to move away from Facebook, others will follow them. As Friendster can easily attest, this starts a vicious cycle in which hordes of people start migrating to the new “it” place. Perhaps this is the opening that Xuqa or some other competitor could leverage to beat Facebook. Again, I don’t expect this to happen soon, and if Facebook can add important features that create true lock-in then maybe Facebook will not be beaten. Still, I’m glad to see Xuqa at least putting up the challenge since at the end of the day, competition is usually good for the end user.

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Testing Entry

February 22, 2006

Testing iceflake with Danny

playstation3 for $800?

February 22, 2006

THere has been some speculation from the media since yesterday that the much anticipated PS3 will cost a whopping $800!!!  if this is indeed true (Sony has not flatly rejected it yet and has actually hinted at a confirmation of the rumor), it could potentially render Sony as practically obsolete.

Perhaps more importantly for the rest of the world, it would mean that Microsoft would yet again become the gatekeeper for one of the mass market’s future entry points into the world of multimedia and information.  The convergence meme that Bill Gates has been touting for years will come true if Sony prices itself out of the market.  This whole idea of a futre in which Microsoft is much more powerful than it is even now is one that I will explore in a longer, more insightful post, but for now, suffice it to say that Sony is slitting its own wrists if it delays and/or launches at anything close to the $800 price point (ugh…marketingspeak spewing out:).

First Blog Ever

February 19, 2006

This is my first, in what I predict will be a long affair with blogging, entry (as is obvious, my grammar skills have seriously declined over the past few months:) .  I have written random test blogs here and there for an upcoming launch of a cool product I’ve been working on but nothing really insightful.

But anyways, I think I’ll use this post to introduce myself a little.  I’m a recent graduate of Baruch College with a relatively useless degree in marketing.  I’m really passionate about technology and entrepreurship and I am on the brink of launching a new company that I have been working on for almost a full year.  I love reading books about business and my favorite author is Dostoevsky.  My favorite movie of all time is probably the incredible Spirited Away.  And…uh…yeah that’s it; I’ve summed up my entire existence in 4 badly written sentences :-).  This blogging thing is gonna be fun!

Hello world!

February 19, 2006

Welcome to WordPress.com. This is your first post. Edit or delete it and start blogging!