When the Web 2.0 era started we began feeling that everything was about “sharing, avatars, engagement, friends, status updates”, etc. For any new “social” website launching, if we included all the words mentioned above, we wouldn’t feel that they’re a copy of other sites. I guess that’s what a social network is supposed to offer right? However if we have a look at the biggest networks, the trend setters like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, either they’re running out of ideas or very cleverly not wrecking their heads with “the next big thing/feature” and simply copying their neighbors… or maybe making it official (like the LinkedIn-Twitter status updates) and integrating properly. Is that the way to go?
Anyways, looks though like Twitter is being copied the most… Here are a few examples:
Facebook copying Twitter
Back in March of this year, Facebook’s redesign offered a new experience… but wait a minute, didn’t that look like Twitter? Yes, so what? Even though that was immediately rejected by 94% of the users, Facebook felt it was the right decision and kept it. Soon, millions of users would get less passionate and forget about this “new design experience” and carry on enjoying the platform. From March ’09 to present, Facebook welcomed close to 100 million new and active users… looks like the Twitter thing worked out…
Facebook have also brought more Twitter stuff to the table: the “@mentions” that now appear as anchor text on the status updates. Great move. I wonder when will Twitter start adding some Facebook spice as “Like” on tweets for example. Blogs have adopted that in comments already. (Twitter and Facebook! what about a “Dislike” button?? Maybe too negative? Over to you…)
LinkedIn copying Twitter
First, they came up with status updates . Then, they made the most obvious change (and a great one I must say) that was including avatars! Recently they implemented the feature “follow” for LinkedIn groups (you can also follow people that you’re not necessarily connected with).
The most obvious one is the integration announced last week (An official partnership) about status updates from Twitter to LinkedIn and vice versa. Furthermore, a Twitter client functionality (right from your LinkedIn homepage) was just added.
Orkut copying Twitter and Facebook
On October 30th, Orkut (Now owned by Google) relaunched with features very similar to their cousins Facebook and Twitter… Don’t even need to say more. Have a look…
The question is: Will a new trend setter appear or we’ll keep seeing this kind of predictable changes? Would Bebo, My Space and other sites need to integrate with their brothers or launch the same features to retain users or simply to survive?
Come on, tell us… What’s next?
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