This was the final session on Day 2 - and the title said it all. Some of these 5 entertainment startups target kids, some target adults!
FlowPlay is a gaming social networking site that targets the teen demographic. It consists of Flash-based animatable avatars, enabling you to interact with your virtual friends without revealing who you are. The main part of the site though is Flash-based online games. They currently have 100 games, not all of them in-house developed - some licensed from others. While you play, you can earn virtual money - with which you can buy virtual things for yourself (e.g. clothing). After dressing up your character, you can go to places, bars and hang out with your friends, dance, chat and have fun. The fact that there is a virtual economy inside the platform makes it quite attractive.
metaplace is attempting to create an open virtual world. The founders think the potential of virtual worlds is high, but most current ones are walled gardens. Further most existing virtual worlds are huge desktop apps that you need to download and keep up to date. metaplace is lightweight and has its own markup, which makes it fully portable from the web to mobile worlds.
Loic Le Meur thought this was a good product and defined it as "the Facebook of SecondLife". On the other hand, Yahoo's Brad Garlinghouse said: whether we like it or not, there is already a popularized platform in the form of SecondLife - so this one is too late.
WooMe started its presentation with some stats around real world speed dating market - which will approach $1 B in 2008.
WooMe brings speed dating to the virtual world. It consists of audio-visual sessions, using webcams. You can use it for dating or to find a partner to travel with. When you find someone (it needs both parties to agree) you have to pay $1 to get in touch.
The surprise of the presentation was that Skype founder Niklas Zennstrom is connected to this app.
The general concern of experts was whether this is just a 'feature company'. Loic Le Meur and Caterina Fake liked it. In my opinion, WooMe has the potential of being used as a Craigslist alternative too.
Zivity's promise is to change the rules of user generated (adult) content. Apparently it's about democratization of adult content. You or your photographer put your erotic photos online, people vote, and you may make money. Membership is $10. 1 vote costs $1. 80 cents go to content creator, 20 cents to Zivity.
Sarah Lacey found this model logical and said this can be an online version of Playboy. MC Hammer warned about the potential abuse of 16 year old kids wanting to earn a little money from this.
Kaltura is another social video site - aka video wiki. This Israeli company is now based in New York. They raised $2M from Avalon Partners.
The idea sounds similar to StoryBlender (covered in an earlier TC40 report). You can take videos from YouTube, photos from Flickr, or other multimedia from your hard drive, and mash them up. You can even stream live video via your webcam.
Their new Facebook App allows you to greet your friends (birthday, graduation) with mashed up funny videos created in collaboration with your network.
Edited by Richard MacManus