10 SOCIAL NETWORKS THAT FAILED SPECTACULARLY
As we all know, the advent of social media has been the success story of digital of the last ten years. But with so many social platforms coming into the limelight over time, many of them have been left behind and completely forgotten about.
So we’ve collated our top ten list of social networks that have failed and the reasons why;
Myspace is the most infamous social network failure. For many years, everyone was hanging out on Myspace in their spare time. But then Facebook came along and ruined Tom Anderson’s ever growing empire. Facebook provided a better user experience and a design that wasn’t able to be customized. Everyone loved it, except for the team at Myspace.
Not only was it a shoddy name for a social network, Diaspora was primarily born because of Facebook’s privacy policies. It was funded by a Kickstarter campaign and it racked up $200,000 before it fell flat on its face. With undergrads and a lack of experience behind the social network, they just couldn’t deliver. Essentially, the company struggled once the funding ran out. Then after the death of entrepreneur and co-founder of Diaspora Ilya Zhitomirskiy, the social network collapsed.
Orkut, a Google-owned network, was a popular choice for networking in Brazil, India and Estonia for a while. However, Google decided not to invest in the product. This caused problems with the servers and the general user experience. Users were left annoyed and frustrated, and many migrated to Facebook. Google saw Orkut failing and began working on further social strategies, including Google Buzz which also retired.
Word is, if Google had believed in Orkut, it could have been what Facebook is today.
Friendster failed because it simply didn’t focus on the primary goal of social. It hosted no sharing possibilities, neither did it allow users to connect – as social networks are supposed to. Having a slow site didn’t help either, resulting in frustrated users who then moved to Myspace and Facebook because they offered a better user experience.
#5 FRIENDS REUNITED
One of the first social networks to ever come to the UK – Friends Reunited, shut down earlier this year. Although it launched in 2000 and had a successful run, with people connecting with friends and even meeting spouses, it just couldn’t keep up with the other social networks. Founder Pankhurst believed Friends Reunited was not being used for its original purpose and users were using the platform as a message board. Whatever reason it died a slow death.
Google+ ranks prominently as a ‘failed’ social network. With Orkut being Google’s first social product to fail, Google+ was Google’s attempt to rival Facebook.
But, with nearly everyone on Facebook, Google+ simply had nothing different to offer its users. It didn’t offer new social experiences and was really just a ‘me too’. While not completely dead it’s given up on competing directly as a social network against Facebook and now is evolving into two separate pieces: Photos and Streams.
Once upon a time, Xanga was a successful social networking and blogging platform. But Myspace soon took them down (even though they were eventually brought down themselves by Facebook). Myspace offered a better user experience, a better platform and a cooler place to be. Not only were Myspace responsible for Xanga’s downfall, better blogging platforms arose like Tumblr, Blogger and WordPress.
The news aggregator Digg, is dead. Providing users a source of quality content on their website, they no longer have the same amount of traffic or users as they once did. As the years went on and more competitors started popping up, Digg began to fall behind. Social networks like Facebook and Twitter just made it easier for users to share content, something Digg couldn’t do.
#9 ITUNES PING
Apple’s social network iTunes Ping wasn’t as successful as they thought it would be. At the top of the technology chain, anyone would’ve thought that Apple’s Ping would have been a huge success. Unfortunately its music-based social network had many limitations. One of them being that users could only preview songs for half a minute. The second one being that there was a lot of censorship. Limited user experience didn’t help either, as social networks like Facebook allowed users to share music easily.
The iOS-only app. Peach launched on the 7th of January 2016. Having fallen from the iTunes app charts, the social network has to be one of the most recent social networks to have taken a tumble. Peach became successful in its infancy but quickly got boring because there wasn’t much to it. With many criticizing the app, there was no way it was going to be a hit.
So the ten most unfortunate, and some fairly recent, social networks that have failed, primarily because of the dominance of Facebook. It’s going to have to be a network that offers something really different and unexpected that knocks Facebook off its perch. But of course the joy of social media is that that very network could be the one that launches tomorrow. Who knows?