Created by former Google employees Carl Sjorgreen and Adrian Graham, privately funded San Francisco-based Nextstop launched this morning to help thrill seekers, tourists and foodies find the concise recommendations they need to plan their daily excursions. At first glance, Nextstop may appear like an amalgamation of crowd-sourced review site Yelp, Yahoo's event site Upcoming and travel listing site Dopplr; however, the site has two major differences - recommendations are positive and can only contain a maximum of 160 characters.
Nextstop hopes to remove the presence of rants and emotional weather reports from the discovery process. The company's commitment to brevity and positive discovery ensures that recommendations stay relevant and therefore more conducive to search than some earlier review-space predecessors. In other words, Nextstop is scaling back the capabilities of user-generated content for the sake of utility. You might actually find a good Chinese restaurant on your first try.
In addition to the limitation/feature of the 160 character count, Nextstop's contributors reap the benefits of Google's APIs as each recommendation is met with automatic address and image suggestions. And like any child of the 2.0 era, what would a recommendation site be without Facebook and Twitter and blog integration?
Nextstop also sponsors community Challenges to encourage new recommendations. Challenges generally consist of top 5 lists with recommendations on everything from hot spots in Salt Lake City to vegetarian restaurants in New York. Upon completion of many of these challenges, Nextstop makes a donation to a local charity in the area of the recommendation. To complete a challenge in your city visit nextstop.com/communitychallenges.