Last night I was looking for a good way to host pictures on myspace when I got sucked into the blog mashable until three o’ clock in the morn’. This is a blog about blogs and the social networking sites, specifically the economics and business models they are using. But they also do a lot of research and talk about various newcomers to the scene. Here is a summation of what I learned:While everyone knows that myspace has the lead when it comes to the width and breadth of social networking sites, there are some contenders for specific interests. I had heard of deviant art (for artists) but not urbis.com, social networking for writers. There is a new competitor for art by the name of humble voice, which supposedly has a noteably more beautiful interface than myspace. Urbis’s strength is the opportunity for criticism of one’s work. Both sites have a ranking system, in the tradition of sites like hotornot.com but judging your work, rather than looks. I will most likely start an urbis account for my creative writing, as this blog isn’t the appropriate outlet for it.
I am also excited to start an account with bikespace, a social network for cyclists. On bikespace, you can create route maps, form groups of riders, and evite folks on rides. Bikespace is still in beta so newcomers could be influential.
If you are looking for someone to host all the pics and songs you want on your page, try badongo.com. They give you a gig and you can upload files from your computer. They will spit out the html to put it on your page. The only catch is that they delete your content if you are inactive for a month.
If you just want to throw some pics on your myspace, most folks have been using flickr and photobucket. But I am more excited about tinypic, allyoucanupload, and imageshack, which don’t require any login information. I’m not a professional photographer, I don’t want to chat about my pics. I just want to get them up and out to myspace.
Another interesting addition to the blogoshere are the remixing sites splice and jamglue. At these sites, you can take songs and sound clips with creative commons liscensing and remix them to make new songs.
I have been downloading mixing plug-ins from winamp.com but now you can just do it all on the web. Then you can upload it to your blog for all the world (okay, the myspace world) to hear.
Here’s an example:
.. classid=”clsid:d27cdb6e-ae6d-11cf-96b8-444553540000″ codebase=”http://fpdownload.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=8,0,0,0″ height=”150″ width=”400″>..>
I am most excited about weedshare.com. Put your pipes away, my Oakstermdam friends; it’s a music sharing site. If you have been looking for a way to give money to the bands you love but want to keep downloading and sharing music, weedshare might be the answer. Personally, when I get my hands on good music I can’t wait to share it with others, particularly because the music I like is not playing on MTV (but then, what is?). The problem is that bands need distribution and the only way to do that has been through record companies. But with weedshare, you become the distributor. You can play any song free three times, then you buy for five dollars. If your friend wants the track, instead of buying it from itunes, they can buy it from you. You get a percentage of the money. Then if your friend passes the song on to someone else, they get a percentage, too. It is a concept so beautiful it makes me want to cry (or are is that the last vestiges of PMS?). More on this later, after I’ve thoroughly checked out their site.
All in all, the mashable blog raises one particularly interesting point: the more myspace expands, the more it cuts into the business that it is creating. If myspace video becomes hugely successful, youtube will lose their business. While this looks unlikely, it is certainly possible for smaller contenders like those mentioned above. Yet add-ons like this are what made myspace hugely popular. On the other hand, one can’t blame myspace for wanting to provide everything, so folks don’t have to look to other websites to complete the social networking experience.
All this means to my awesome, devoted readers: you will be seeing more and hearing more on my blog in the future. As usual, your comments are always welcome.