The competitor I'm most worried about is Xanga. I remember four years ago when Xanga and Livejournal were the only two social networking sites ... and penetration (for an early adopter site like Xanga) was incredibly high at my school. Everybody I knew had a Xanga account.

Since then, the quality of their service has remained relatively static (which in the web world translates to declining quality), so they've lost a lot of market share. Most people I know have moved onto other services like Facebook (a significant number of people only registered Xanga accounts to comment in other accounts; Facebook fills this social networking void) and MySpace.

When I first started working on Tabulas, I was always concerned with Xanga. Xanga was one of the sites that could have been the next MySpace, but for whatever reason they never made that huge jump that MySpace was capable of pulling off.

You know what's funny? I think after MySpace sold out, I think those Xanga guys finally woke up to what kind of gold mine they were sitting on. You notice since then they've launched "upgraded profiles, which is in essence competing with Facebook/Friendster. They've even taken the obligatory measure of trying to police their network with "tagging" of accounts that violate the TOS.

In any case, I think they're going to have a very difficult time transitioning into this field - they've already lost a lot of market share and have an uphill battle with Facebook (which poached their primarily college/high school demographic) and MySpace.

Posted by roy on April 23, 2006 at 10:17 PM in Ramblings | 4 Comments

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Comment posted on April 25th, 2006 at 12:31 AM
I like Tabulas for all the good things you've done, but even more so for the people here. So, in a way, I don't want Tabulas to be massively more popular, like MySpace... But I really like the cross-posting to other services.
I had this idea that you could optionally allow a "signature" at the bottom of cross-posts that has a link back to the Tabulas post. That would have the benefit of drawing people to Tabulas. And I often update my posts (or fix bad html)
Btw, many companies are blocking MySpace, Friendster, etc. and picture sites like Flickr too. The evil Websense company here in San Diego... now that's a company to invest in! ^^
Comment posted on April 24th, 2006 at 08:35 PM
why are you worried about xanga?! of all the blogging/networking platforms i have seen, i think xanga is the worst!

i cannot figure out the appeal of myspace. the interface and layout SUCKS.
Comment posted on April 24th, 2006 at 12:12 AM
I enjoy the fact that when people stumble upon my journal, they tend to view all of tabulas as a more mature, untapped gem of the weblogging fad. A lot of people that I talk to refer to tabulas as "that blogging site that's better than myspace and xanga because it's more sophisticated."


Comment posted on April 23rd, 2006 at 10:26 PM
I hate MySpace. The only good thing they have going is the ability to post videos.

What I find annoying about those things is the exposure really. Public journals are a weird thing... I want certain people to read it... some of whom I know and others I will never meet, but I want all of them to read it.

But then there's that point at which it's uncomfortable--coworkers, family members, enemies... they ruin it.

One enticing thing I find about Xanga is the way it's dying out. I like the idea of a place that has been abandoned but heavily used. I like the idea of a place that is first and foremost a journal.

When the fickle leave, you're only left with the committed.