Home Microsoft Taps Multiply.com as New Home for MSN Groups

Microsoft Taps Multiply.com as New Home for MSN Groups

In a world dominated by Facebook and MySpace, one of the best kept secrets in social networking is Multiply.com. This fast growing little social network is about to make a whole lot of new friends.

Microsoft announced today that it will soon close down its 13 year old forum site MSN Groups and it’s encouraging its users to export their conversations over to its new official partner, Multiply. It’s a big win for one of the most solid social networks online.

Florida-based Multiply.com announced last week that it has 10 million registered users and sees 18 million monthly unique visitors – both numbers that have grown 100% year over year. Compare that to Facebook, which we reported in July had grown 41% year over year.

Multiply has a rabidly loyal following, something that might change with an infusion of MSN Groups members, and its feature set is impressive. It’s best known for its very granular privacy controls on published content.

Additionally, when Multiply rolled up a number of their super-frequent feature updates into one relaunch last year, we said it compared favorably with Facebook in the following 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.

How many people are now being told to shift from MSN Groups to Multiply? We started asking around but quickly realized that we’d do better to try to squeeze beer out of a rock than user numbers out of Microsoft. According to coverage at Liveside, a new Live.com Groups will launch in mid November. We hear that Live Groups is actually pretty hot looking, so why people are being sent to Multiply we don’t really now.

Will users of the old-fashioned MSN Groups make the transition well and enjoy Multiply? We’re not sure, but we wouldn’t be surprised. We like Multiply and we think it’s pretty cool that MSN users are headed there.

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