Friday, May 18, 2007

ZLife: Unconstrained Social Networking

Social Networking is one of the key aspects of the Web 2.0 phenomenon. Sites like MySpace and Friendster have become incredibly popular with millions of users able to obtain a web presence fairly easily. However, these sites come with a lot of restrictions and limitations for the user to express themselves in the social network. They typically have templates that are used by the community users to create "Profile" pages with predetermined layouts for text, pictures, videos, comments etc. In other words, there is very limited personalization provided by these sites. They could in-fact be described as "Drivers License" sites.

In addition, these sites are to some extent like "walled gardens" that prohibit certain external content to be placed inside them (for example certain gadgets, widgets, IFrames). MySpace had recently blocked users from embedding Photobucket videos (covered here by Michael Arrington) before actually buying Photobucket shortly afterwards.

Another important aspect of using these social networking sites is that users typically get ONE page to display information about themselves. As a result, they are limited to using text to describe/showcase their interests, hobbies etc. This is a big impediment to allowing them to be free and creative and expressing themselves as they wish.

The ZCubes platform provides a powerful and flexible tool for Social Networking users to freely express themselves using unlimited rich content. Users do not just have a profile page but a home page and a whole library of experiences to showcase themselves to the rest of the community. This allows them to communicate information in a rich and detailed manner with no restrictions. In addition, every user also shares his/her list of public CuBees (a recent exciting ZCubes messaging feature that is discussed in one of my earlier posts). The list provides further information about things that seem to interest the user and hence provide another view into their social networking world. Finally, if the user is already part of the MySpace, Friendster or other social networking community, he/she can always showcase their profile pages from those sites as MiniZs inside a ZCubes experience to kind of create an all encompassing social ZLife. Users can get a "ZName"to identify themselves inside the ZCubes community.

In a nutshell, in the ZCubes Social Networking world, users have a whole array of content that allows them to express themselves freely, using rich content and with a high level of personalization. The different components of the users ZLife are:
  • Profile Page
  • Home Page
  • Library of Experiences
  • List of Public CuBees

So go ahead and become part of the exciting ZCubes community by joining today, and enjoy the freedom to express yourself as you want.