Diaspora*: The New Facebook

Brittny Drye

The foursome behind Diaspora*
Photo from joindiaspora.com
Facebook has become so ... Facebook. I can barely recognize it anymore with its ads and privacy (or lack thereof) issues. It's the typical business story: A great product is released, beloved by millions, and then the big shots (I'm talking to you, Mark Zuckerberg) start caring about how they can make more $$, surrendering to the big bad corporate wolf. 

Well, NYU students Dan Gruppi, Max Salzberg, Raphael Sofaer, and Ilya Zhitomirskiy are fed up with it and are creating a social networking website that is reminiscent of how Facebook used to be.

The website is called Diaspora* and is currently being written, coded, built ... whatever it is that those computer guys do. They're hoping to launch in September 2010.

As they describe it in a recent New York Times article, the Diaspora* software will let users set up their own personal servers, called seeds, create their own hubs, and fully control the information they share. Sofaer says that centralized networks like Facebook are not necessary. “In our real lives, we talk to each other,” he said. “We don’t need to hand our messages to a hub. What Facebook gives you as a user isn’t all that hard to do. All the little games, the little walls, the little chat, aren’t really rare things. The technology already exists.”

Hear that, Facebook? Looks like you've got some competition.

What do you think of this project? Do you think it will be a success? Once it launches, do you think you'll join?


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