Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Online tools with offline benefits

Adam Rifkin talks about building a new Facebook app Booze Mail

What is interesting in Adam's post apart from the fun app is his assesment of current apps on Facebook:

"The most popular apps on Facebook to emerge in the first month of its platform reflect the most popular worldviews in America. Namely the ones that highly value things like social status (Top Friends), media consumption (iLike, Video, Movies, Flixster), mysticism (Fortune Cookie, Horoscopes), and superficial bonding (Graffiti, X Me, SuperPoke, Free Gifts).

... from its earnest beginnings Facebook aspired to use online tools to help people connect offline -- in the real world -- to build more meaningful relationships. What these superficial bonding apps lack, despite being a lot of fun, is a connection to the real world that is offline."

I totally agree with Adam, if we can build applications that really bring poeple together offline, the value to the user is so great that they will make this application part of their life. Allowing users to send each other virtual kisses or kicks in the butt, might be fun for a few hours or days but will disappear the way flashing text disappeared from Web pages (until Myspace brought it back with a vengence)

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