Tuesday, February 03, 2015

Shapr, A New Way To See Online Communities

I recently learned about Shapr, a new social network company. Shapr on the opposite of other social media such as Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin has a different approach of what your community is about. And it is backup by scientific facts: 

As the article saysResearch by Oxford University psychologist and anthropologist Robin Dunbar revealed that our brains can only manage about 150 close, personal relationships. More than that, and those friendships are at best, superficial.

And this is a true fact: How do you want to hang out, or even to have a real connection with 500 people?

This is the reason why I targeted for example at the beginning on LinkedIn to reach 1500 people. But as the years go by, and as I meet more and more people, my network expanded over 500... Even if I refuse some contacts! Indeed, I have a principle. I don't accept invitations if you are not:
- A person I really know and appreciate in the real life, with a real vision of what the people do and is about
- A person that come from one of the schools that I studied at (and that has the same circle of interest).
- A person that does not have any linked with my activities (either Marketing, CRM and/or Retail).

But still my number of connections has blossomed.

Shapr is hence ambitionning to allow a privileged relationship with your core 50 connections. Obviously it is a great idea, but it raises some question:
  • Do the people I consider my top 50 consider me as one of their top 50? I may value people more than they do with me.
  • What kind of top of the line relationship the service may offer?
  • Is there a decent way to have a dynamic 50 short list? Meaning people can come and go without hurting anyone?
This is for this last one I believe the concept is great, and maybe should be defined by LinkedIn. Indeed, Linkedin remain the top social community for business interractions. But it could allow its members (a bit as Google + do) to create of its own a "special 50" interface.