If you’ve spent any time on any social network or microblogging platform anywhere, you know as well as I do that there is one request that tends to crop up far more than any other: “I wish we could have groups.”
Twitter—thanks to a grassroots effort by Chris Messina—tends to handle that grouping with #hashtags. Local microblogging site CitySpeek made groups part of the process of posting your updates. Friendfeed handles it with groups. And Facebook—which incidentally owns Friendfeed now—does… well whatever it is that Facebook does. Fan pages maybe? I don’t know.
Point being, everyone starts with what I’m—or you’re—doing and then tries to wedge that content into a group. What if, instead, we started with the topic as the central focus? I mean, instead of the user. Well, now you can give that idea a try. With Simler.
Simler—the majority of which consists of Portland-based team members—takes the typical social jibber jabber model and tweaks it. But just a tad. Moving the focus of the site from the individual to something more, well, social: the subjects on which that individual chooses to post.
Because that’s what we’re really interested in doing, right? Talking to people about the particular topics in which we have interests. Getting different views. Having conversations.
I mean, if we didn’t want interactions, we’d all just start blogs.
Simler has a really good take on keeping the topic—or tags—at the center of the relationship. And that takes the individual out of the video-game-most-friends high-score-mentality of gathering connections. Instead, the focus to participating in the topics that have lots of people and conversations.
Honestly, it’s kind of like the good old days of BBSes or chat rooms. But with a little of that new century je ne sais quoi. And that, my friends—as retro as it sounds—is a fresh take on how we interact online, these days.
What’s more, anyone who knows me knows that I’m a sucker for the shiny object. The well designed interface. The little things.
And Simler has all of those. In droves.
And even though it’s brand spanking new and the conversation is a little light, it’s those little touches that keep me coming back to the site. Like the early days of Pownce. When the thoughtful features—and the things we always wished Twitter would do—were all there.
Sound good? It does, doesn’t it? Well, not so fast there, Trigger. There’s a little problem here. You see, Simler is still in beta. And that means you can’t all just go running over and barging in there for the party like you’re in some ’80s teen flick. It means you need an invitation.
Oh, I mean, “Oh wait!” I happen to have a couple of those. Invites I mean. So if Simler has piqued your interest or struck your fancy or some other some such platitude, let me know in the comments below. And I’ll get you and invite. I’ve got about 20 to give.
And the fun doesn’t stop there. You see, Simler invites are Gmail style. When you sign up, you’ll get a few invites of your own to shell out. And then whomever you invite will get invites. And so on and so on and so on.
For more information, visit Simler. To get your invite to Simler, be one of the first 20 people with a valid email address to comment below. (I can see the email address when you comment. Please don’t put it in the comment itself.)