Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Do you use MeWe as an alternative to Twitter/Facebook/Google+?

Following Twitter's betrayal of trust, I'm looking at possible alternatives, both current and future.  I'm aware that something very interesting is in the air, which will doubtless become clear in a few months' time;  but right now, there are not too many alternatives out there.  One of them appears to be MeWe.  It claims, in rather high-sounding terms:

MeWe began in 2011 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, as a vision hatched over a forgettable dinner between good friends who had previously been early founders of social media, Mark Weinstein and Jonathan Wolfe. With Facebook all the rage, Mark and Jonathan felt something was getting lost: the spirit of our democracy and the backbone of our privacy. The big technology companies, you know who they are, had reverted to treating us as commodities. They somehow mistook people signing up to use their service as a welcome invitation to mine, spy, and sell our information to advertisers. All in all, it felt pretty creepy.

Mark and Jonathan dreamed of the next generation in online communications, a network, that would advance the best of social media with privacy built into the design, where members would feel safe and respected while sharing their lives. Mark relocated to Mountain View, California, in the backyard of technology’s established Goliaths, and together with Jonathan, built a team of worldwide visionary individuals, and generally nice people determined to succeed in changing the Internet.

MeWe is the visionary culmination of three years of determined efforts, research, and development to provide people around the world with a communication network they love and trust.

You can find out more about MeWe at its home page, and in this Wikipedia article, and in this overview.

I'd like to hear from readers who've used MeWe and can report on it from personal experience.  Is it as good as it sounds?  Is it worth recommending to others?  I'm aware it's far smaller than its better-known competition, but that's not necessarily a drawback.

If you've used MeWe, please leave us your views in Comments.  Thanks.



libertarianrn said...

Started a MeWe account about a month ago. Interface works fine, I haven't had any problems with it. It seems to be a viable Facebook replacement, if they can get some inertia going. They definitely have a marketing problem though. The name sounds strange, and their marketing comes across as "trying to market to Millennials". I'm even in their target market, and it's off-putting to me!

They have been largely taken over by middle aged conservatives in the massive Facebook Gun Exodus. Lots of libertarian/conservative/gun groups, but not much else so far. I haven't seen any signs of censorship, so that's a plus.

I'd recommend giving it a try. I'm pretty much running my facebook profile and MeWe profile in parallel, and hoping enough people will switch over that I can drop Facebook at some point.

Anonymous said...

Is MeWe a gratis service? Then how do they support themselves? All the gratis services, like Google Facebook Twitter Yahoo Flickr WhatsApp et cetera share the same business model in common: they sell access to their users, which necessarily means that their users voluntarily surrender privacy.

You can have a privacy-respecting, fee-based service, or you can have a privacy-destroying, gratis service. Those are the two alternatives.

Anonymous said...

Using minds.com now. Like it. MeWe and Minds suffer from newness: they sound cool but haven't attracted enough momentum

Miguel GFZ said...

I am in MeWe also. Need to streamline the visuals and like everybody else has said, get momentum

David W. said...

I'm leery of any social media company that doesn't want to mine my data and sell me stuff.

How exactly do they make money if not through focused advertising?

libertarianrn said...

For those asking about revenue: MeWe is free, and you can store up to 2GB of data - photos, video, etc. on their service. They make money by selling larger amounts of storage. The hope is that the people using the service for free will hit the storage cap, then sign up for a subscription for more storage.

genericviews said...

Since I'm not a chick, I have never seen any point to social media.

You cannot post a whole bunch of personal stuff about yourself on the internet and then complain about your privacy not being respected. It is an unrealistic expectation from the start. The internet is not a private place.

Anonymous said...

I would recommend looking at Diaspora: https://diasporafoundation.org/

I don't think its as big as others, but it has also been around awhile, and can integrate with Facebook/Twitter/etc if you want to post the same thing to multiple locations.

Pawpaw said...

I don't use any of them. I'm a blogger. I have a Facebook account because my sisters insisted, and now I use it to keep track of my grandkids, who "friended" me for no apparent reason. Now, they wonder why I know so much about them.

Twitter sucks, but it always has. There is no way to express complicated thought in the limited number of characters allowed. Most of the others also suck, and serve as a place of self-embarrassment to those who have accounts.

So, there.

Joel C. Salomon said...

It’s very much a “walled garden”; I’ve not figured out how to generate a URL to a discussion.

David W. said...

For those asking about revenue: MeWe is free, and you can store up to 2GB of data - photos, video, etc. on their service. They make money by selling larger amounts of storage. The hope is that the people using the service for free will hit the storage cap, then sign up for a subscription for more storage.

Quoted from above.

If this is true, then I wouldn't put much time into it. There is enough free storage/short term upload sites out there ranging from tinypic to youtube to face book that it won't get large enough to actually be worth going to. The thing that makes social media useful is the fact that tons of people are on it. You can say "my book is on sale from now till next Friday, go get a copy for your friends!" to facebook and have potentially millions of people see it. Same with Twitter. You could also make a thread on Reddit if you really wanted to. To put time in effort in on a social media website that doesn't have lots of participants and isn't a daily or at least weekly visit by a large number of people seems like a waste to me, strictly from an economics standpoint. This is why those super long highways out west with nothing but cornfields on both sides rarely have billboards every few dozen feet like a major traffic artery. Thats basically what facebook/twitter/imagur/tubmlr/etc are there for, a giant traffic highway system to get your product out there. Thats why facebook made like a bajillion dollars through advertising. Because pretty much everyone goes there, including my 64 year old father who can't even get the television to work properly half the time.

Mike Hotel said...

I was part of the firearms mass exodus crowd. The interface works great. Can't say I've connected with any friends, but I get to look at a lot of nice guns.

Really, we just need to ween ourselves off of expressing every thought on a public forum. It isn't good for anyone. We are not that important, but have been mislead into thinking that we are.

RobC said...

The name sounds funny... like a oriental announcing his intention to take a wizz...
But I do like their manifesto... now to convince the kids... ;-)