“Fear” because of a rumor could become something productive. At least that is the basis for making a social media site similar to Facebook, which is customized by a local developer into Statusbooks. Founded by Andy Syoekri Amal – a journalist and a blogger of Kompasiana from Palopo, South Sulawesi, which previously elected as Kompasianer 2010 – Statusbooks originally was a Facebook Pages that already has more than 6200 people liked it at the moment. Fear of the rumor about the termination of Facebook – so it would terminate the communication via Facebook Pages are – that drove the making of this Statusbooks.
Statusbooks is customized based on the engine made by Blogtronix. At first glance it looks a lot like Facebook. You can create status, share videos or links, and add friends. There is also a group maker service. Statusbooks also added the ability to mention per member, so it considered to have features like Twitter, too.
One thing I dislike is the ability to customize the background like Friendster. For me, one of the reasons for moving to Facebook is inability to customize background so it would look neat, unlike Friendster which had an unpleasant user interface after customized with a variety of backgrounds.
For me, it is the common feature that makes this Statusbooks has no new advantages for the (potential) users. You could compare FUPEI and SixReps which both are created by Sanny Gaddafi. Fupei – which is more general – tends to stagnate, while SixReps – which specifically for fitness and bodybuilding – is more favorable. Since it is difficult to penetrate the hegemony of Facebook, local developers should create more unique social media sites that have value-added niches.
I just saw one of Singapore’s social media sites specifically for elementary school children. Only children registered in schools in Singapore could join. Plus to reduce the crime tendency, children can only add friends from a single network only, such as the same school. This is an interesting example of how niche markets are developed. Facebook requires users to be at least 13 years. What about the primary school children who started to have the technology literacy but unable to join? Sites like these are the answers.
Back to Statusbooks, of course, its presence could save the state bandwidth because it is available on a local server, but in the long run, Statusbooks must find a niche that could be offered to Indonesian users that has been infatuated with Facebook. The piece of cake in this segment is huge, but to get 1 million users in the long run, we have to offer something different.
Translated by Nita Sellya