Panel: Dave McClure (Founders Fund) , Dan Gould (Fox Interactive Media), Bradley Horowitz, VP at Google
- Social gaming platforms slowly becoming more popular in the US
- McClure: Features really don’t matter that much (on platforms)
- monetization/distribution is more important
- Looking for the intersection of users and money
- Throwing traffic at an uncompelling feature won’t help it. It will go away as soon as you turn the traffic off. This is how Yahoo! has been attempting to grow the popularity of some of their features.
- Top 3 Social Platforms in the US: FB, MySpace, Twitter … also, the Web as a platform
- Gould: “It’s a mistake for FB to spend too much time copying twitter” … FB a lot more personal, that’s its strength.
- Would make more sense for MySpace to have more asymmetric features (like Twitter) because of the “broadcast” nature of MySpace
- How much $ would you allocate to the FB ecosystem as opposed to the Twitter ecosystem (companies built on on those platforms):
- Horowitz: I”d give it to GM (hehe) … correction, Google Wave
- Gould: All on FB because it has a lot more mainstream stay than Twitter (even in the long run) [I agree]
- None of the top payment gateways in US (eBay, Apple, AMZN) are social networks. Why not?
… because they have “shit people want to buy” (as to say they don’t need social networks).
Google basically has all those pieces in place (socail + payment).
Horowitz: Who you know and who your friends are may or may not be important from a purchasing standpoint
Gould: “You can buy music on MySpace … but the US should learn from Japan on social payments”
Mobile Wars in the US (iPhone, Pre, Android, RIM)
- iPhone is the leader because of a superior phone, superior platform … Steve Jobs bullying AT&T as opposed to the other way around (traditionally)
- Why has Android not dominated the market: too early in Android’s life. Android is still very much a work in progress.
GOOG trying to get competitors to use better browsers, raise the bar for technology (cites Gears and Chrome as filling the holes in browsing experiences)
- “What’s good for the Internet tends to be good for Google”
- McClure: Why aren’t there social networks around Moms/Kids/Families?
- Huge oppty to figure out how to organize those groups that want to connect to each other (play dates, etc) to help figure out where the “family spend” goes (strollers, schools, etc etc)
- Gould: When you have communities of people that are passionate about a particular topic, you end up with highly active forums (the dark matter on the Internet)
- These sites aren’t collecting hundreds of millions of users but are making good money and are able to sustain
- Ning is making inroads here by allowing social networks be created around niche verticals
- Panel seems to agree that the silo’d social networks will continue to co-exist with the macro-network (MySpace, FB)
- Gould: sometimes barriers can be good — bad UI and slow pageload keeps only the true enthusiasts on board – keeps content high quality
- Gould: we need more hardware in the US that can help link the online and offline worlds. The stored value cards in JP are very effective.
The slides from Dave: