Media bunnies, pay attention! These new social networks offer social media with a twist to get your interactive mojo going
Social media is a huge deal. This year, it’s estimated that there will be around 2.13 billion social media accounts. That’s an awful lot of global social media accounts, especially when you consider Facebook reports that it has around 1.23 billion Monthly Active Users. So naturally, new social networks are always arriving, and always with the hope that they’ll make it big.
So what if you’d like to find a new social network, or want a new app for staying in touch? Here are four of some of the newest kids on the block that I found, which might just be the ones to watch.
Originally launched as an invite-only network in March 2014, Ello is now open to the public. It serves as an ad-free alternative to larger social networks, and sports a minimalist website design. Ello proclaims it has three main ‘ethos’ that govern the way the network runs; It will never sell user data to advertisers, it will never show adverts and it will not enforce a real name policy.
In July last year, filmmaker Casey Neistat launched Beme, a new social network. Sharing on Beme involves holding your phone to your chest, where the phone then records a 4-second video of whatever you’re looking at, then uploads it straight to the network for whoever’s following you to see. You don’t get to see the video, because the idea is that it’s the real you. Once someone has watched your Beme, they can’t get it back. To send feedback, you can move your finger to send a ‘reaction’ to the person who created the Beme, which is a real-time selfie of you watching it. It’s currently only available on iOS, but an Android version is hopefully coming soon.
Meerkat launched in February 2015, and allows users to livestream videos directly from their phone. Once you have signed up, the app allows you to connect your Facebook and Twitter accounts, which then automatically notify followers once you have started live-streaming. Users of Meerkat are given the option to save their streams to their phones and are able to comment and like streams as they go out. Meerkat notably achieved a great deal of success at 2015’s South by Southwest festival.
Peach was unveiled in January 2016 at CES, and has been created by Vine co-founder Dom Hofmann. Users create profiles and make ‘friends’ with the app. It’s entirely self-contained and users do not have public profiles, and nothing within the network is obtainable on the web, such as through URLs. Peach allows you to create simple postings, but uses what’s called ‘structured data’. For example, instead of a simple text post, you may want to post on Peach about the weather or the song that’s playing right now. Peach also includes an option to use simple commands to operate the app. For example, typing ‘g’ brings up a GIF search box, or ‘c’ brings up a dialogue for calendar.