by Jacob Morgan
Plurk is a relatively new service that is very similar to twitter. You have 140 characters to explain to people what you are doing, you can copy and paste video/img links, and you can also have “fans” (followers on twitter) that can stalk you…I mean follow your updates. Plurk does have a few things that twitter doesn’t such as Karma points and a “friend” status. Karma points are awarded based on your network activity, this means your and your friend’s activity on Plurk. The more you and your friends use Plurk, the more karma points you get. Karma points then give you access to little emotion icons that are found in popular chat programs such as aim.
A friend is essentially one step up from a fan; basically a two-way connection with someone. The neat thing about Plurk is that you can organize your friends into “cliques” a.k.a. groups. You can also control which “cliques” can see your messages. This is a feature that many people want twitter to add, well Plurk already has it. The time line view on Plurk is also pretty unique. It’s a horizontal time line that you can drag around with your mouse to see the different online conversations. It’s relatively easy to use and figure out.
There is one thing that still worries me about Plurk, but it isn’t necessarily from the consumer standpoint. I’m talking about a business model. It seems that Plurk is trying to follow in the twitter footsteps, that is, get as many users as you can, and then worry about the revenue model. Well we have all seen how well that works with twitter. Plurk doesn’t seem to have any premium features that would require any sort of payment, nor does their appear to be any form of advertising, so how is Plurk making money? My guess is, it isn’t. There are going to be several twitter copycats that are going to be springing up all over the place, the trouble is going to be adoption rates. Twitter is far ahead of the micro blogging curve (in terms of competition) and the new guys are going to have a hard time trying to catch up, unless of course they have a product that is truly amazing (and has a better down time percentage then twitter.
I still want to see a solid revenue model and business model out of some of these social networks. I don’t care for a revenue model build solely on advertising or a revenue model that involves a “to be determined” clause. Come on guys, an company is still a business and you need to treat it like one.
My aplogies for not posting any pictures, I am having trouble with the WP database and will hopefully have that issue resolved soon.
“Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining”