July 14, 2013
As in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, Xanga is trying to initialize a Genesis Device in its search of a new glorious rebirth. In order to keep the rebirth reaction going, it is going to need some money, but I don't believe that will become the early constraining factor. The most crucial factor in its early success will be the core number of bloggers at its onset--will there be enough and will they be prolific enough in blogging to hold off the impression that the glorious launch of Xanga 2.0 has become spent fuel collapsing in upon itself and plunging it into an inescapable oblivion?
I was present at the birth of Xanga. Its early critical core of "bloggers" was actually artificial. The Xanga founders (nicknamed by me as the "xangagods") created the "community" of these artificial bloggers in their own image and likenesses. The soon-to-be infamous Bianca (“Bianca Broussard”) was created and developed for PR purposes and went on to spam Geocities users with invitations to join the great new experiment; there were numerous "bloggers" about at the onset, but most, if not all, were apparently either 1) related to the Xanga enterprise by inside invitation or 2) fictional personalities created to shake out the test bed and to create a pre-public, pseudo-real sense of community.
How do I know this? The fictitious "bloggers" passwords were easily guessable. And the real persons (xangagods) fueling the fictitious interactions left enough unpublished messages to each other on these fictitious blogs for someone who was not a prophet to discern this core dynamic.
In any case, the point is that the xangagods properly recognized that a new startup blogging community had to have a critical core of interacting bloggers or it would fail. And so they furnished that. They also recognized that once a core was in place, they’d need to grow and grow rapidly to gain momentum and keep things exciting. Hence, the Dec 18th and 19th 2000 primary “Bianca Broussard” recruitment spamming of Geocities users (I was spammed and joined on Dec. 20th 2000). Hence, the secondary recruitment spamming of Angelfire users on March 3rd 2001. In 2001, Xanga finally accrued a self-sustaining base of actual bloggers that made Xanga attractive enough to other potential bloggers to join without the need for further fictitious or spamming shenanigans. At that point, the “training wheels” were no longer needed on the Xanga bicycle.
With the launch of Xanga 2.0, Xanga may have a critical core of subscription bloggers at its onset to make things “interesting” without the need to resort to fictitious blogging. But after the initial “birth effect” wears off, what are they planning to do this time to grow and grow rapidly to gain momentum and keep things exciting? That’s the challenge. Xanga 2.0’s Genesis Device will need more and more fuel in the form of participative bloggers to keep from imploding. Xanga 1.0 managed to do this through recruitment spamming that offered free blogging. Xanga 2.0 ???
My conclusion is that without some offering of free blogging Xanga 2.0 is doomed. But I am not a prophet.
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