Another Plaxo?

Judith Meskill at the socialsoftware blog points out that BusinessWeek Online is Gaga over Bebo and wonders:

Is there something I am missing here? How is Bebo.com different than Plaxo.com? The service that so very many have grown to love to hate? Why would we all fall in love with Bebo whilst loathing Plaxo?

I haven’t really tried bebo yet, but from what I can see it doesn’t look that different to what Plaxo was doing. As Judith also points out, no one is quite sure whether Plaxo is the personification of evil or a darned good thing, though last time I looked I felt there were some serious privacy issues that had yet to be addressed. Maybe they have been; that was more than a year ago.

I notice that Plaxo now has nearly 5.5 million members and 1.2 billion [sic] ‘connected contacts’. (They passed 5 million in late January.) That’s a lot of people, even if you factor in the duplicates (since Plaxo doesn’t weed or match contacts — if you’ve got a Joe Bloggs and I’ve got a Joe Bloggs in our address book, that’s two Joe Bloggs even if they’re the same guy.)

Also I notice that Plaxo has a revised privacy policy, including the important one:
You maintain ownership rights to Your Information, even if there is a business transition or policy change. Sounds like they’ve listened to people. I’ll try to take a closer look at this issue again in coming weeks. Thoughts as always very welcome.

23. February 2005 by jeremy
Categories: Privacy, Software, apps | Tags: , | 1 comment

One Comment

  1. If you plow around the Bebo.com disclosures, you can find mention that you are giving Bebo the right to put banner ads and such on your PC. (It’s not in the user agreement, interestingly, but is disclosed in the fine print elsewhere on their site.) It is ultimately adware. For that reason, I didn’t sign up, so I don’t know from experience if they are exploiting that aspect yet, or if they are just building up a huge user base first.