Mar 11 2011
We live in a revolutionary world. Never before has it been possible to talk with people around the world. Phone, email, chat- these are all ways we can talk to anyone else on this planet. We can even communicate with those in the flight, space, or underwater. With all these means of communication people have continually looked for ways to connect. Thus social networks were born. The long list of social networks that came in and out of favor is well known.
The current king is of course Facebook. Just about everyone has an account and is connected to those around them. Friends, family, and coworkers are all lumped into the same group. The web is awash with jokes of people making a comment amongst their friends only to have their parents chime in. The fact of the matter is, as your friend circle grows, people feel less comfortable sharing information about themselves. So the more friends you have the less relevant and personal is your Facebook experience. That’s not the way it’s supposed to work!
There are a couple ways to resolve this. The first is to navigate through Facebook’s obscure and ever changing privacy options. Unless you’re particularly adept at finagling the many settings, you’re likely to expose the wrong information to the wrong people. The next option is to renounce social networks altogether. I know a few holdouts in this category. Eventually everyone gets invited by someone they’re particularly fond of, so they join. The last choice is to find a new social network. Though it may seem like an impossibility now, we all know that eventually we will.
Providing a new solution for the social networking world is youRoom, (found at youroom.in). youRoom is a social network that better mimics real world relationships. Instead of grouping everyone in the same large pool of friends, it let’s you connect with them separately. Like it is in real life.
The way it works is simple. You can set up separate rooms, each for your separate groups of friends. These have the option to be either public or private. From there you can post messages or upload various files to share with the group. People who have joined that room can then respond to your comments, and also set up their own circle of rooms as well.
The benefits are obvious. Instead of letting Facebook decide what to display on your wall, you get to choose. After all, why should we trust Facebook’s algorithm to tell us who is doing what. The other benefits are that it solves the privacy issues with Facebook. You can pick and choose how to connect with people, sharing only the information you want with them. So you can finally put your buddies in their own category, away from the prying eyes of girlfriends or parents. Or you can put your book club in its own group. Sure they’re great people, but you don’t need to share your personal life with them.
Like all social networks, they take some time to catch on before they become a roaring flurry of activity. To encourage this, youRoom offers three packages. The first is free, and gives you the ability to create rooms and join them, as well as posting images and PDFs. The second is ‘fan’ which is also free. To maintain your fan account you simply need to periodically post a link on Twitter sharing about your youRoom experience. The fan accounts allow you to post an unlimited amount of file types. The last option is premium, which comes with all the benefits of fan, and also offers much more space per month for posting files, as well as premium support. It’s $5/month or $45/year.
The social networking world is an interesting one. Companies that once seem impenetrable later fall out of favor into oblivion. Right now it’s hard to imagine a world without Facebook. youRoom cast such a vision for the future of social networking, so people can connect on the level that they would like. Nobody knows when Facebook will falter. We only know that it will. youRoom is a new option that addresses many of the shortcomings of the world’s largest social network. I for one welcome the option to maintain more control of my social circles. It’s only a matter of time before everyone does.