Social Networks Business models: ASmallWorld CEO’s speech

ASmallWorld is a private high-trust social network by invitation only, designed by its founder, Erik Wachtmeister – a former investment banker – for people already connected to each other in the (offline) world. Erik has participated at the DLD conference and the video is available.

I recently read an Eric’s post about the event, here a short excerpt:

Social Networks have emerged over the past 3 years as a useful tool in creating and recreating networks, and establishing new unfettered distribution channels. The original idea behind aSmallWorld was based on the need for a large group of people with similar needs, to connect, reconnect, and exchange trusted information. It was not based on creating a free-for-all where anything under the sun and on the WWW goes. What is missing in almost every other social networking site is notion of Relevance and Trust. I believed there was a need for ASW because of the enormity and chaotic nature of the unlocked beast that is the Internet. MySpace and others have been feeding this beast and indeed creating exciting new forms of entertainment. Our goal, however, has been to come up with an alternative to the chaos, with endless “noise” drowning the “signal” we are searching for when we go on line.

There is a lot of talk about web 2.0 and recently web 3.0. Web 2.0 is about connecting people with people and data, not WebPages. Web 3.0 is about connecting people with meaningful people and data. In that vein, aSmallWorld is all about filtering out information overload, spammers, scammers, stalkers, and irrelevant and unfiltered data that makes up 99% of what is out there. Add to this our over 100,000 trusted experts who can make our little world the most trusted place to go to online.

I see a clear trade-off between unattended and open communities, like Orkut, and deeply controlled and closed communities like asw. I believe Eric is right saying that there was a need for communities like asw, just wondering if we might eventually see communities with an high level of trust democratically controlled by its own members..

Technorati Tags: Social Networks, asw, DLD