Sure, Tribe.net has had blog functionality for a while, Sure, site’s like SuicideGirls.com has “journals” for their users, which are basically blogs. But they’ve never really felt like “real blogs”. They’ve not had the same, hard to define association with that thing we think of as “blogs”.
Using Typepad, one of the hottest blogging applications – an application based on the largest and most popular blogging application on the Web – gives Friendster blogs a major boost of credibility. And of course, Typepad gets a nice theoretical boost of revenue from Friendster users signing up.
But there is much more happening than simple revenue or credibility boosts. Friendster and Typepad are creating the next evolution of social connection and networking. Friendster and Typepad both have major hurdles to overcome in order for each service to fully sink its claws into non-techies, non-early adopters, and this partnership helps each other overcome those hurdles.
Friendster – User Reality
One of the biggest problems with any sort of online social networking/connection tool is providing solid methods of not only introducing one person to another, but expanding their relationship and knowledge of each other. With the quasi-anonymity of social networking site, including dating sites, it’s always tricky to ferret out the truth from other users. Is this person really a 6′ tall blond super model from Scandinavia? Is that person really a single 25 year old with no kids?
Adding a blogging component to a social networking tools is a great way to help build that trust, but the problem has been that the blogging tools never had the feel of a real blog. Because of their “proximity” to the core site, there tends to be a belief that you could be lying on the blog (or quasi-blog) just as much as you could be lying in your profile.
Working with an industry leader, who has a near standardized feel to their blog component helps to establish that what you’re reading is really from the person in the profile…and that the profile is accurate.
Typepad – User Connection
Blogs, by their nature, are fairly dissociated. Each blogger (or small group of bloggers) aren’t really tied into any larger network of bloggers. Sure, there are services that attempt to do this as an additional layer, but by default blog aren’t really tied to each other. Services like LiveJournal or even tools like RSS and RSS readers have attempted to solve these problems. Personally, I’ve always wished for an Amazon style recommendation function for blogs – “Because you’re reading Common Craft, you may also like . Social Customer Manifesto“.
Using Friendster together with Typepad, this is effectively established. After all, if you like one type of blog you’ll likely be interested in their friends as well. (Much like how Amazon treats product recommendations) In addition to that, we tend to pay more attention to people we know personally – or at least feel connected to. (I pay much more attention to my brother and his activities than of my college friends) So activity on, and traffic to Typepad should increase as readers get to know the bloggers much deeper than their About Us page shares with them.
I’m interested to see how current Typepad users can work the other way and associate with Friendster.
Any way you cut it, this seems to be a great partnership – at least in concept. Hopefully both teams can pull of the business angles. Strangely, I can’t seem to find a press release for this partnership on either the Six Apart, Typepad, or Friendster sites…