Business Administration Education Guide

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Virb – A Place For Webbies

On the surface, it isn’t obvious why Virb is useful or even fun. It looks like just another social network and it doesn’t do anything revolutionary. However, Virb offers a lot of features that take away the constantly annoying traits that are present at other social networking sites.

Virb is a cleaner sleeker and more personalized neighborhood with a ton of great features that combines easy user customization, Flickr photostream, VirbTunes (aka iTunes plugin), a wide screen video player with a light box effect and a ton of other features that annoy users at other social networking sites. In addition, Virb is busy building new features and functionalities such as a Twitter module.

According to Virb

“ is a music-oriented content and information website that provides a service to musical artists and to record companies on behalf of musical artists” -- the people behind popular music networking service PureVolume. Conversely, Virb is attracting non-music industry users who simply enjoy music but are not involved in the music industry and who doesn’t like some form of music?

The Downers

Virb isn't for the 'newb", "nub" or "n00b (new to social networking / internet). While Virb has fantastic customization features the problem is that most people (including myself) don’t know how to use CSS that well. Until there are a large number of easy to find Virb layouts that users can copy and paste Virb growth will be slower than it could be. Yet, if Virb implements easy to use ‘copy and paste ‘ Virb layouts will the viewers be forced to see “this layout created by XXX” ads? Anther thing to consider is that a business driven user cannot reach a mass audience through Virb alone -- but a business driven user can certainly reach a quality audience.

Here are some the coolest Virb features that I found and believe have the potential to steal MySpace users.

  • Gives you the ability to easily customize your profile and unlike MySpace, if you don’t want to hear today’s Top 40 blazing song or yester year’s classic, Virb has a feature that allows you to turn off the person's customizations while viewing their profile.

  • Virb Rocks: Shows off some of the best designers and designs on Virb

  • Virb Transport: Allows you take any piece of your Virb profile and put it on your own website or other profiles

  • Virb Music Browse: Choose the music you like and choose only the music you want to locate on Virb. When you find a musical artist you like, you can save all the songs in your personal player list on your profile. The top 3 songs you enjoy the most show at the top of your profile -- similar to MySpace Friends.

  • External Blog: Syndicate your external blog and Virb will feed it into their system which will show up in your friends' recent activity, and will be displayed as if it were part of Virb.

While I do consistently use MySpace for writing placement, I have never cared for MySpace and the numerous Spam messages, ‘meat market’ and teenage atmosphere and "it's ok to look" display ads. Virb has much more of a community feel that displays the personal, the artistic and the business aspect of people. It is an all in one social networking site that should pick up more of the technically minded people as the site gains popularity

Virb is what MySpace should have been by now if it actually worked as an online social networking community and not an enormous marketing flea market. I won’t say that Virb will overtake MySpace (yet), but as more of the age 25+ web savvy users get sick of web cam girls, emo attitudes and pyramid messages, people will want a social networking community and not simply a “place for friends’. So if you're looking to connect with webbies, Virb looks like the place to do it.

SierraNightTide: Virb - A Place For Webbies

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