Staying on top of news and trends in the social media industry can be tough. It's a constantly growing, constantly changing beast with new platforms that pop up almost weekly. So many, in fact, that it’s impossible to keep up with all of them. One that quietly popped up over the last couple of months and has been gaining a bit of traction around the internet is a new social network called Ello.
What is Elllo?
Ello is the latest attempt at taking on the big social networks. It’s a simple to use, ad-free social media platform that was created by a small group of artists and designers. The main reason for its creation was to have a place for people to communicate and collaborate online while avoiding an overload of advertisements. It was originally intended to be a private network, but there was so much buzz created around this new platform that others wanted to join. Recently, Ello made the decision to go public and is currently in beta and you can only join with an invite invite code from Ello or a current user.
What makes Ello different?
Ello sets itself apart from the popular social networks by being ad-free. That’s right; the creators explicitly state there is not, and will never be, any advertisements on Ello and users information will never be sold or traded to advertisers or data brokers. Don’t believe them? You can refer to the company’s manifesto for reassurance. If they can stick to their guns, it could be a game changer for social media in general and give Ello the opportunity to be successful.
One feature of this social platform that I personally like is how they allow you to categorize the people you follow, similar to Google+ circles, but not quite as versatile. Anyone you follow can be thrown into one of two categories, “Friends” and “Noise” (don’t worry, they won't know which one you put them in). The “Friends” category is for people whose posts you care most about. In a list format similar to Twitter, you will see the full text from every post and larger images. The “Noise” category is for those who you want to follow, but don’t necessarily want to see every update they make, making it perfect for following a business or celebrity who posts frequently. These posts are organized in a grid format with smaller images and shortened text so you can scan through them faster. You do have the ability to view the full post if there’s one you find interesting.
The Future of Ello
What does the future hold for this social media rookie? That depends. It’s currently lacking when it comes to features. You can post text, images, and hyperlinks and that’s about it. There are future plans to integrate video (YouTube, Vimeo, etc), audio from Soundcloud, apps for both iOS and Android, as well as a slew of other features. If they can get these necessary features released while there’s a buzz still surrounding Ello, they may just have a chance to compete with the likes of Facebook and Twitter.
This blog on Ello was written by Ben Johnson for The Social Media Girl community. For more information you can connect with Ben via his website or connect with him onGoogle Plus and Twitter.