App.net: The Country Club of the Internet? // Digital Local

App.net: The Country Club of the Internet? // Digital Local:

Granted, it’s not yet clear exactly what App.net’s subscription fee will be. But even a very low fee could prove prohibitive for a large segment of the web. And even if it doesn’t, the appeal of this new network seems limited to a specific demographic, at least for now: All of my friends who have backed the site are both white and male.

Apparently at some point in the past 13 years it’s become taboo to charge money for services.

White and Male

All of my friends who have backed the site are both white and male.

This isn’t surprising. Facebook and Twitter both started with white males, and the same can be said of most start-ups to this day. The only people I’ve talked to about App.net have been white and male. So what. The Internet is a big place.

Visit join.app.net and look at the “App.net Community” which instantly prooves that more than white males are interested in App.net.

Web Segregation

App.net would become the country club of the internet and the beginning of a trend of web segregation.

Unbelievable.

Twitter Welcomes All Users

Twitter has a diverse user base and generally welcoming approach, and it shows.

Twitter is welcoming of users because that’s what advertisers need. Facebook and Twitter make their living off of getting as many users as possible, as engaged as possible.

An Exclusive Community

Hacker News is a fundamentally exclusive community.

community |kəˈmyo͞onitē| noun

  1. a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common:
  2. a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals:

Yup, that sounds about right. “Exclusive community” is not only redundant, it’s also not a negative at all. Communities of like minded individuals like Hacker News is what the web was built on.

It’s only recently that we’re seeing how when you open your community up to everybody, it starts to fail.

Bubbles

Of course, pockets and bubbles have existed and will always exist on the internet.

App.net raised more than $500,000 from users who will pay $50/year for users, and $100/year for developers.

Recurring revenue in the ball park of over a half million a year. And that’s even before an Alpha version of the product.

This isn’t anything close to a bubble.

Bubbles occur when companies don’t create value, get inflated with investor capital, and have complicated business models.

I think it’s refreshing that a startup is taking data and privacy so seriously.

The promise of App.net is going to be different depending on who you are. To some people App.net might be about data and privacy, but to me it’s about user experience.

Others might believe in App.net because of their resentment towards Facebook, Twitter, or their advertisers. Meanwhile, developers might believe App.net offers them a stable platform to built products on thanks to the open standards, and look forward to being treated with more respect than they get from Twitter.

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