Google recently launched Google+, which is a social network, designed to compete with Facebook and Twitter. No one has taken the time to explain it to me, but from what I gather, Google+ consists of “Circles” that you put your friends in to, “Hangouts” for video chatting with your friends, and “Huddles” which allow you to send messages to a group of friends. There’s also a “Plus 1” feature, which is the equivalent of the “Like” button on Facebook.
I’ve been “using” Google+ for a week and have realized that theses circles, where everyone is sharing and plus oneing each other, make it more of a socialist network than a social network. The sharing and caring within these circles completely defeats the purpose of having a social network that is exclusive, which was the reason Facebook was created at Harvard in the first place. Sure Harvard was already exclusive, despite not being inside the beltline, but Facebook took it to another level. Users were required to have a harvard.edu e-mail address to join, which made sure that they were only friends with people who were in college, that the girls they stalked on Facebook were at least 18 years old, and that they only associated with people in their same tax bracket. The alternative was MySpace, which was mainly used by people that didn’t go/couldn’t get in to college. Even as Facebook began to expand to other schools, their “.edu” joining requirement ensured an ITB-esque exclusivity amongst members. MySpace continued its OTB status, catering to drop outs that logged on using free Wifi in internet cafés.
Just when users thought their elite Facebook world was safe, the floodgates opened and anyone with an e-mail address, mouth breathing MySpace users included, could join. The addition of these former MySpace users made it too risky to stalk girls, knowing that half of them could be in middle school, or worse, that they could be poor. Facebook has since opened their doors to people in other countries, furthering our nation’s immigration problem.
The Google+ circles had the chance to restore the exclusivity and elitism that Facebook had lost. I quickly realized that Google+ totally blew it when I found out that users don’t know what circles their friends are putting them in or when they’ve been excluded from a circle. There’s no point in being exclusive if people don’t know they’re being excluded from something. That’d be like starting a free Country Club. There’s no point of joining if they let anyone join. I’m not going to play blades on the same course as someone I don’t know. Also, everyone is considered equal when you’re inside a circle, making it impossible to tell who the richest person is, or how important certain people are. Google+ does not provide the elitism that we need in a social network.
In order to regain the lost exclusivity of Facebook, and inject some hierarchy into the egalitarian circles of Google+, I’m starting my own exclusive social network called ITB+ (pronounced “plus”, not “positive”. It’s a social network, not a blood type). Now, I’m not trying to compete with Mark Zuckerburg, I already know that I’m smarter than he is. I’m creating the exclusive ITB+ so that we can continue to only socialize with people we already know and grew up with. ITB+ features include:
ITB+ Beltlines – Instead of having an ITB circle jerk with those stupid Google+ circles, users will drag their friends inside different beltlines. You can see my beltlines below.
Other examples of beltlines could be; bartender friends that you don’t make eye contact with outside of the bar, friends from elementary school that got shipped off to prep school, etc. You can also rank your friends so you know who’s the most important in each beltline. Unlike Google+, users will know when they’ve been added to and excluded from a beltline. They’ll receive messages such as, “WNF IV added you to “Broughton” beltline. You’re in.” and “WNF IV started “The Club” beltline. You’re not allowed in.”
ITB+ Hangouts – group video chat, I don’t know why we need this, but it seems exclusive, because you probably need at least an iPhone 4 or iPad 2 to participate in a video chat.
ITB+ Games – users can play games instead of doing actual work at their jobs. Example: Cameron Villageville – similar to Facebook’s Farmville, but you manage Cameron Village. Be sure to watch out for those tenants that fail to pay their bills but still throw parking lot parties that draw huge crowds, literally 10’s of people.
ITB+ Huddles – I don’t need to send a group message to my friends to figure out my plans for the night. I know I’ll just see them out at Five Points every night. ITB+ Huddles are used when you have to send a mass text to get your friends to pick you up from whatever house you ended up at the night before.
ITB+ Market – All of your transactions will be recorded and posted to ITB+ Market. This allows your friends to see what you’ve purchased so that they can go out and buy the exact same thing, but in a different color of course.
To join, users will be asked a series of questions that only ITB people will know the answers to. This will prevent the kind of impostors who friend people they’ve never met on Facebook and then pretend to be from Raleigh. We won’t have to worry about poor people joining ITB+ because you’ll only be allowed to join by using a MacBook (or a PC that’s more than $1,200), iPad, iPhone 4, Blackberry, or other expensive toy. ITB+ will not allow users to sign in from places like the public library or coffee shops with free Wifi. Privacy shouldn’t be a concern since users have already learned everything about everyone else from the gossip that their parents pass down to them.
I’m expecting that ITB+ will become so successful that we’ll be able to have ITB secede from the rest of the internet within months. I’m sure I’ll come up with, or steal, some features from the other social networks to improve on ITB+. Feel free to share some ideas on how to make it as exclusive as possible.
“On Facebook, I had to keep my profile set to my college network, even though I graduated 8 years ago, so that I could still stalk profiles of girls who are currently in college. With ITB+, I can stalk them while giving off the image that I’m a young professional!” – Test User
“Next to being blackout at Five Points, ITB+ is the best way to make sure I only go home with some strange that’s socially acceptable.” – Test User
“I was afraid of leaving my ITBHarmony.com dating profile, but ITB+ has so much more to offer. Now I can tell my friends that I’m not one of those pathetic people that join dating websites.” – Test user[hr]