Multiply, a small but sophisticated social networking service with one of the most loyal userbases on the web, unvieled a long list of new features this afternoon. It might be because it's Friday night here in the US, but I'm feeling a little crazy. Since there's some healthy Facebook backlash developing, since social networking is not a one-size fits all phenomenon (demands for data standards excepted), and since Multiply's new features look so much like Facebook - it seems a good time to compare the two services. Facebook is a great place to go if you want to find a lot of people, particularly college educated people. There is a world of social networking beyond it, however.
Multiply has always had impressively flexible privacy controls; today it added greater precision over privacy, audio and video commenting, media import from other sites and more.
Multiply is Better Than Facebook in Some Important Ways
- Facebook has a newsfeed displaying updates from your friends. Multiply lets you slide your newsfeed to include in your display just your own updates, your contacts' updates, and/or your close or distant networks' updates.
- Facebook has a smooth in-house video app, but the new Multiply app lets you leave audio or video comments anywhere and see any user's other media from inside the player.
- Facebook made big improvements to its email messaging (sending you the actual message in your email instead of just a link) but Multiply now has 8 email alert controls and more.
Facebook made headlines with its Platform and is now worth more than most remaining US automobile companies, but Multiply is no fly-by-night operation, either. Remember when the news came out that despite all the blog love, Flickr was actually smaller than the unheard-of at the time Photobucket? Multiply may be small by major social network standards (the site's front page says "Our 7 million members upload more than 1,500,000 photos and 16,000 videos every day") but it would be a mistake for market watchers to ignore it. Multiply users love the company, too- Multiply doesn't appear to anger their users like so many of its competitors do.
If you're interested in a good solid, state of the art but still easy to use social networking site, these new features at Multiply make it a very compelling offering. Does it stand a chance at survival in the face of other services' near total domination of the social networking market? Yes, there are 6 billion people in the world and I would not bet against a service as solid as this one.