A Guide to Ello

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While no one really knows what Ello is for, everybody still wants an invite to it. 

Currently, Ello is the hottest social network around that no one can get access to, at least not without an invitation. Designed as an alternative no-ad platform to social mega-sites like Facebook, Ello seems to be somewhat of a combination between Tumblr (you may post GIFs) and Twitter (uses “@xxx”). Ello says it’s beautiful, simple, and free of ads. Even though it’s presently an invitation-only site, it’s literally experiencing more than 30,000 sign-up requests per hour.

Why Ello is Different

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What sets Ello apart from sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest? Ello claims there’s a better way to ‘socialize’. They believe that a social site should be a tool to empower people, rather than a tool to manipulate, coerce or deceive; a social place should connect people with others and celebrate the joys of life.

What exactly does Ello mean by that? Nobody on Ello even understands what it’s actually for. Some users post anime GIFs and pics of their latest fingernail fashions, while others are using it as if were a blog. Is it an “anything goes” site? Remember when people first signed-up to MySpace and ‘friended” nearly everyone they knew on the planet? Strangely enough, it’s created a sort of feedback loop of users on Ello criticizing Ello on Twitter, while users on Twitter are requesting invites for Ello. Strange, indeed.

Overall, people are tired of being a target for brands or products to bombard and are becoming more aware and suspicious of the way their personal information is being manipulated for the sake of profit. Ello claims that they’re for the people and are taking a stance against all the manipulative advertising.

Ello and Brands

Having said that, we all know that the Internet is capable of ‘crashing and burning’ in a very short amount of time when it comes to ‘hype and hoopla’. For instance, some people are poking holes in Ello’s manifesto due to brands like Sonos already signing-up with Ello. Even the co-founder of Ello, Paul Budnitz has an account for his bike shop. Isn’t the very presence of these brands on a so-called ad-free platform rather counterintuitive to Ello’s policy?

It’s theories like this that make some people suggest that Ello’s ad-free network will not be free of ads for very long, particularly since its primary funding was supplied by a venture capital firm. Undoubtedly, Ello will be drawn towards the profitability aspect, even if it means they must compromise their present values and principles.

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