Before the introduction of Facebook, several other social media networks attracted consumers’ attention for quite some time. However, due to some weaknesses on the part of these companies such as their strategic planning and timing, these companies never got to reach the heights Facebook has. Furthermore, instability and lack of support are some of the main issues that lead to the downfall of these social media platforms.
Today’s internet is way stronger, faster and secure therefore communication is made easier unlike before when the internet was not as fast as it is hence most of the social media failed to get a bigger number of users. Therefore, some of this social media sites remain as a memory that took over the social network before the coming of Facebook.
It was considered the leading social media site before Facebook and was launched back in the year 2002. Within just a few months after its introduction, this social media company gained up to three million active members. The founder of Friendster, Jonathan Abrams in 2003 sold the company to Google for 30 million dollars. Whereas Abrams wanted to try and make the company grow., it could not quite do so since they could not manage the pace at which new members were signing up. Subsequently, the company closed in the year 2006 but was able to survive in the Asian market until the year 2011.
In the year 2003, MySpace was found by Tom Anderson and Chris DeWolf who were then employees of eUniverse, with sound infrastructure and scalability being the main things that the firm put much focus on growing. Users were able to create personal community, blogs, groups, videos, music as well as personal profiles. In the year 2005, Rupert Murdoch’s NewsCorp decided to purchase Intermix Media which was initially owned by eUniverse initially for 580 million dollars. Additionally, MySpace had more than 16 million users by the time it was sold, and there was a time in which the company valued at 12 billion dollars while under the ownership of NewsCorp. However, after 2007 MySpace started losing millions of users each month because of the increasing popularity of Facebook.
This is not a traditional social media platform, but at some point, it was one of the most reorganized ways of interacting and meeting up with friends over the internet. Second life was introduced in the year 2003 by Linden Lab as a 3D modeling virtual world base, with the aim of the site being to encourage the users to virtually interact with friends, engage in various activities online using an avatar and participate in jobs as well. The website was entirely different from Facebook, so it was not a direct competitor but Second Life gained popularity to a point where people were making a living through the use of their avatar. The rapid growth of users made the company struggle due to the steadiness of their infrastructure.
Named after the concept of six degrees, SixDegrees.com was one of the first social media sites. Users used to invite family and friends then invite external contacts to join to see if there was any connection with other users on the platform. At some point, SixDegrees.com had one million active members, and it was in partnership with NADP. Nevertheless, the company was not that profitable at the time and was consequently shut down in the year 2001, but it was revived later on for the former members only and those who received an invitation.
It was a social networking site that was designed by Google in the year 2004. The social media was hosted in California originally, but nowadays it is one of the most popular social media networks in Brazil. Orkut aimed to help its users to connect with new and older friends, and that is why it became the most popular site in Brazil, Estonia, and India until the year 2010 when most of the users in India and Estonia moved to Facebook. Since it is more prominent in Brazil as well as its legal issue the company decided to move its management and operation to the country to continue with its business. There are about 66 million users on Orkut today.