Pownce Is Neat

posted in Miscellaneous on Feb 23, 2008

I have generally been a little hesitant to do most of the social networking things that have come up in the past few years. Livejournal and Myspace never became interesting enough for me to try out. Myspace especially. It’s just too ugly. I did have a short stint with Friendster (I think that’s the name) because a girl I knew at the time coerced me into it, but after a month or two I didn’t use it at all. Now, like many people, I have an account with Facebook, and I used to enjoy it, but now it’s getting too bloated and ridiculous that it feels like it’ll end up just as dumb, ugly, and un-functional as Myspace. So now, as of today, I have started to use Pownce, a very lightweight social networking alternative.

So as of last summer sometime, we’ve seen Facebook go from a pretty cool service to a bubbling cesspool of “You have been bitten by a Zombie!” and “Do you want to be a ninja or a pirate?” invites. It’s ridiculous, and I’m tired of it. I remember two years ago when all it was about was getting together with old friends. Now I’m just getting tired of everything. So let’s discuss Pownce.

Now, this may be a very preliminary review of the service considering I’ve had the program for just a couple of hours now, but I think it’s really cool. Basically, Pownce allows you to send messages, links, files, and make events and send them to your friends. Simple enough. Facebook does this same thing, and even has more functionality by allowing you to share photos and make groups, etc. But the difference, and what seemingly makes Pownce a better service, is the fact that those four things are all Pownce does, and it’s streamlined the process. There are none of the ridiculous plugins that you’ll find with Facebook. It’s simple and fast.

The downside (if we’re still making comparisons with Facebook) is that there are no groups. This is a subjective downside because, personally, nearly every group that I’m a part of on Facebook never updates and no one really gives a crap about the content. Most people just join the group because they know the person. I’ve come across this recently with the Pressed & Bound group. There are currently 79 people in the group, and I know that 95% of those people don’t watch the show and probably don’t even know it IS a show. Now, don’t get me wrong, I appreciate the moral support from all of my friends, but as far as the feature set of the groups on Facebook, hardly anyone uses them, so most people join a group and then it just sits stagnant.

Another interesting thing about Pownce is that it exists both online and as a program that you can download. When you go online, all of the notes, links, etc. that your friends have posted simply shows up on the front page, similar to the “News Feed” of Facebook only these are things people want to share. Downloading the program affords you the same information but in a small application that looks very similarly to any IM client. It’s just a small window that shows all of the posts from your friends, with space to reply to them. You can also do all of your posting through the app.

The only downside so far is that I don’t know anyone who uses the service, and there’s a good chance that most people won’t ever come across it. A lot of people like Facebook and their stupid plugins, so it will be hard getting them to switch over to something more lightweight and less filled with pirate invites.

So if you’re like me and tired of Facebook/Myspace, give Pownce a try. My name on the service is garretble. Pownce is neat.