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 Topic: Friendster and

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Joined: 03 Mar 2003
Posts: 33
Interests: Queer History and Biography
Physical Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Posted: 4 Oct 2003, 1:08 am    Post subject: Friendster and Reply with quote

Well, I've spent two days investigating and tinkering with Friendster and a newer but similar service called Tribe, and perusing the comments that Web posters and bloggers have made on both systems (which, I've discovered, can be a very effective way to get a sense of what's going on).

Friendster is great--provided you can plug into someone's large network without too much work. If you're starting from scratch, it's frustrating, and you feel like a loser just because you're not part of the "right" sounds too much like grade school for my liking. One person's Web post summed it up best for me: "Maybe I'm wrong. But my first impression of Friendster is that it sucks. I mean, you have to invite friends in order to do ANYTHING on that network. 'Invite Friends' = give out your friends' private email addresses. NICE. Ok, ok, they SAY they won't sell, lease, give out, share, your email address, but suppose the database gets hacked or they change their rules? I would KILL anyone who gave out my private email address to something like friendster. I certainly wouldn't do that to a friend. So, since I won't violate my friend's privacy, I can't invite anyone, and since I can't invite anyone, I can't DO anything on Friendster."

(I should add that I am using a SEPARATE free email address,, to test drive both these services, and I would encourage you to get a free or email address and use that instead of your regular email if you want to participate. Word to the wise.)

Tribe has one great thing going for it: you can join public "tribes" (groups) WITHOUT having to know someone to get in, so you can get down to business without wearing yourself (and your Rolodex) out. Also, if you can't find a public tribe you want to join, you can create your own, which is a great idea. Why bust your gut trying to connect to someone else's node on the network, when you can create your own node? That's more along my line of thinking :-) we can create tribes for queer history, gays and lesbians in the theatre... you get the idea.

Also, Tribe takes some features from another very popular service called Craigslist: listings and events for a region (classifieds, etc.). So I would say Tribe is Friendster, plus the postings and events features of Craigslist (see to get an idea of what I mean).

Both Friendster and Tribe are beta (i.e. in-development) software. There are clear signs that Friendster is going to start charging for its services at some future point, when it goes to actual launch, whereas Tribe states in its FAQ: "The service is provided to you free of charge. We are going to do our best to keep it that way. Our intention is to derive revenue from commercial uses such as job postings and featured listings."

My final verdict? I'm keeping my Friendster account, and hoping that someday I may actually get plugged into a part of that 2-million-person network, but I think I'll be spending more time--and having more fun--on And I will be watching with interest as both services grow and develop.

Oh, and if you're already on, please consider adding me to your personal network :-) My email address is (Ryan Schultz). Thanks!

And you're welcome to join me, on either network. I'm now a member, and so I can invite you without providing your email address; you choose if you want to take part or not, and what email address to use. Just read the descriptions of each system and, if you want to join, simply click on the links below (or cut and paste them into your Web browser). Let's start that "six degrees of separation" experiment and see where it takes us…

Or, if you just want to follow my adventures in both systems, check the blogs:

TRIBE: What is is a trusted network of your friends and their friends that allows you to:

- Meet new people
- Join and Form groups
- View and create listings for anything from jobs and cars to finding a good dentist...and get immediate results.

After you join, you'll be connected to Ryan, and everyone Ryan knows.

P.S. will never sell, trade or exchange your email address with anyone.
Click on the following link or copy the URL into your browser to join

FRIENDSTER: Ryan Schultz has invited you to join Ryan's personal and private community at Friendster, where you and Ryan can network with each other's friends.

Friendster is an online community that connects people through networks of friends for dating or making new friends.

Friendster is for people who are single, people in relationships, and anyone who wants to make new friends or help their friends meet new people.

You can use Friendster to:

* Meet new people to date, through your friends and their friends
* Make new friends
* Help your friends meet new people

Once you join Friendster, you will be automatically connected to your friend Ryan, and all of Ryan's friends.

Click below to join Friendster (or cut and paste into your browser):

--your faithful Internet investigator and librarian, Ryan.
Ryan Schultz, Reference Librarian
University of Manitoba Libraries
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
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