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Pinoy Creates Blogging/Social Networking Site

Jason Banico launches The Blogging + Social Networking Hybrid from his current base in Silicon Valley.

He shares what’s happening: Funchain behind the scenes. His story:

Jason Banico has just recently announced a limited beta release of Funchain version 2, the new online
community that brings social networking features to blogging, and vice versa. It’s a totally revamped
engine that made use of lessons learned from the original Funchain, launched in 2004.

While it’s true that social networks like Friendster, MySpace and Yahoo! 360 offer blogging, Funchain has a
more flexible blogging engine, with 100% Blogger-template compatibility, allowing for prettier looking blogs.

Now he could use something about danah boyd (yes, small letters) latest paper, Friendster lost steam. Is MySpace just a fad? – about MySpace’s fantastic popularity.

People were hanging out on Friendster before they hung out on MySpace. But hanging out on Friendster is like hanging out in a super clean police state where you can’t chew gum let alone goof around and you’re told exactly how to speak to others. Hanging out on MySpace is more like hanging out in a graffiti park with fellow goofballs while your favorite band is playing. That said, there are plenty of folks who don’t want to be hanging out in a graffiti park and they are not sticking around on MySpace as a result.

Is Web 2.0 the “super clean police state?”

Jason is looking at an international user base – not only Pinoy. One of danah’s observations on what could bring down MySpace:

International companies will be far better positioned to create new social technologies because they won’t have to abide by American laws even if American citizens use their technology (assuming the servers are hosted outside of the US). Unless, of course, we decide to block sites on a nation-wide basis.”

Jason shares his thoughts on emulating MySpace and Blogger. He even met Orkut Büyükkökten of Orkut.com – a Google product that seems to have been forgotten.

How do you think he can succeed in a crowded market?

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  • I tried it out. Wasn’t able to try out the blog feature. There were PHP errors. My initial impression – it seems to be something like friendster, msypace, blogger and livejournal. What’s really striking though is the color scheme is so bloggerish.

  • Hi J. The site is still in beta and I’m weeding out these errors. Could you tell me where the errors are? Thanks.

  • This is what I blogged about at Technopinoy,
    we lack innovation. Why copy something that has been around for a long time and enter into an already crowded market?

  • how can he succeed? where’s pinoys’ bayanihan spirit? he can succeed by us trying it out and give him back our feedback so he can improve on it. ikanga… sino pa bang mag dadamayan kundi tayo din? 🙂

    i tested it actually last night and it seems interesting that everything is packaged into one thing… so you get to really really know more about other members….. but filling up those items in the profile section were like tormenting….

    but im proud a pinoy did this… and as to surviving a crowded market – as long as you are passionate about what you’re doing, you will succeed.

  • PoshNeya

    I tried it but it wont accept my 6-character username.

    hehe. i will still register later.:D

  • Hi guys. Thanks for the feedback and comments. It’s still rough around the edges right now so I apologize.

    As for the familiarity in color schemes, layouts, and other visual elements, the idea was to drive home somewhat that this is a remix/hybrid of various services out there. It borrowed elements from many other services.

    Monsolo, I’m sorry if it doesn’t look innovative right now. Rest assured, I have more in the pipeline. There’s a lot of interesting things that can be done when blogging and social networking intersect, stuff that the incumbents are currently unable to do.

  • funchain,

    Don’t get me wrong. It is a nice try and I salute you for making the effort. I just wish that Filipinos move beyond Friendster clones and into something that could change the websphere.

  • wrencelot

    i was supposed to post this comment yesterday but ive realized that its too harsh it may break the developers heart, but now im hoping it would help just a little bit..

    i gave a firts hand look at the site, and as a salesman, i believe first impression last, and that the first 5 second of getting to know the product, or the sales person is very crucial, but seeing the site gave an impression to me of nothing new.. yes you mentioned remix/hybrid of what is out there and i would have not known that if i have not read your comment below.. see where im getting at..? im not much into blogging, or social networking, and probably thats what i wanted to know, why would i consider to use your site, and even if i do blog or socialize virtually, why would i wanna switch to your site and start all over again..? that information is what you need to put in your main page to get people actually register and use funchain..

    how come the models are all caucasians..?

    and oh, rewrite your urls.. this is jasons profile url http://www.funchain.com/?menu=show&submenu=profile&id=1 which woud be nicer and cooler if it look like this http://www.funchain.com/user/jason

    sorry, am just being a salesman..

  • Hi again, Monsolo. “Changing the websphere” as a goal is quite ambitious. However, just to let you in a little bit on the things I have in mind, here’s an article that inspired this version of Funchain early 2004.


  • hello wrencelot.

    the url actually is /user/jabanico. you might have clicked the footer which hasn’t been updated until recently.

    the site is targeted at a global audience. its going to be launched specifically with a partner in malaysia, indonesia and latin america. i’m also looking at countries that do not yet have high penetration of social networking and blogging.

    with the rate of the blogosphere growing double every 6 months, there’s still lots of open territory out there.

  • wrencelot

    if thats on your line up, then my salute to you..

    you might want to invest on a good PR, public relation that is..

  • Funchain,

    Check out the link in my page on Web 2.0 for some ideas you may use. There may be hope for social networking sites (SNS)only if there will be use of the data outside the SNS.

  • Social networks now are evolving, they are bringing the battle on desktop level to make sure users don’t even need to open a browser and potentially discover a better service.

    Examples: Friendster Grouper and Imeem.com

    Imeems is really good and it may even take the pie away from Flickr since it allows photo uploading and tagging. So far it allowed me to upload more than 200 pictures for free without loosing the links (compared to Flickr’s 200 picture limit). The Privacy settings are also handled per info field which is patterned to orkut.com

    Grouper: Works like Imeems and i wont be surprised if its actually a re-branded Imeem.

  • Monsolo, yup Web 2.0 is interesting. I made a page on it for schools. http://www.rssrssrss.com.

  • If you’re looking for other Pinoy Web 2.0 offerings, dotPH is about to launch version 2 of i.PH/Calliope (within 2nd quarter this year), which will feature social networking along with its current blogging offerings. They’re basically getting onto the Web 2.0 craze as is 99.5% of the industry.

    I’m not overly cool about it (I already have Web 2.0 overload!), but it might be worth a try if you’re looking for friensdter/myspace alternatives. Mostly Pinoy developed of course, save for the use of some foreign open-source software such as WordPress.

  • Tried it. Looks promising. A suggestion: add a feature to automatically import contacts from the present slew of social networking sites and also email address books, to make things easier.

  • hi. yes part of my to-do’s are SN imports from Friendster, like what Multiply has done, and blog entry imports, like what TypePad has.

  • Just wanted to announce that Blogger import feature is now available in Funchain…

  • moroco

    in my humble opinion, anyone that just imitates friendster or myspace, or another wordpress/typepad clone just won’t fly. you have to target a niche.

    for example, unitedphilippines.com has a great “unity” theme going for them. in the end, only the 2 biggest players and a handful of niche sites will survive.

  • I want to share this also to you and to all. http://www.atin2.com/profiles . This a FREE Community Based Social Network Website for Filipinos. I hope you help us patronize our own. Thank you.

  • Lets just say it became a trend, social networking has been part of our daily life meeting new people through this quite interesting.There are many social networking today well known is friendster and facebook I think.

  • Nice blog! The light green is pleasing to the eyes 🙂 With regards to the spread of Pinoy networks, I think it is a good idea. People get exposed to technology. Bumubuti ang Pinoy. Better than getting into vices or drugs.

    I would like to add to the list http://www.noypf.com Glad we have lots of Pinoy Social Network in the web. Mabuhay ang Pinoy!

  • Maging miyembro na.. Masaya dito.. http://www.noypf.com

  • I want to share this also to you and to all.


    This a FREE Community Based Social Network Website for Filipinos. I hope you help us patronize our own. Thank you.

  • I want to share this also to you and to all. http://www.atin2.com/tambayan/ . This a FREE Community Based Social Network Website for Filipinos. I hope you help us patronize our own. Thank you.