Did we Menshn the new Twitter look-a-like?
They say shoot for the stars: and that’s entirely true. However, when a Yorkshire terrier takes on a Rottweiler, there is, 90% of the time going to be a clear winner. From a personal perspective– this is how I feel about the new Social Media site Menshn. Of course, it has its positives and negatives against our favourite Twitter giant, but some things are just too well established to compete successfully against. What do you think? Menshn was set up by Tory and public speaker Louise Mensch in the late weeks of June – a woman of political controversy after setting herself up with a renowned Twitter page to use in stirring up political debates. Now she has decided to take on the world and set up her own Twitter-like platform especially for politics, with a brand name oddly similar to her own.
The idea in itself is a good one. The creation of a place in which people can solely talk about politics, and express and discuss their opinions on different boards. The initial setup is very well orientated – you do not have to follow people to see posts, and when you login you are presented with a “free for all” of peoples varying opinions on what’s going on in the world. Of course, this would at some point become confusing, however Mensch has categorized each topic along the right hand side in a navigation bar. These direct you to the different sections and talking points on the site so you can look at relevant conversations of interest to you, without getting mixed up in the rest of the “gabble”. In many ways this ‘no-followers’, free-for-all approach is better as you can reach many more people than you would do usually. However, it is likely to get confusing once more and more people begin to use the platform. The true question is, how sustainable is a site that hosts only one genre of conversation? Politics is undoubtedly something people will always want to discuss, however many people do this already on Twitter. People like the healthy balance of seriously discussing their political beliefs and views, to talking about their pets – to talking about what they had for breakfast. It’s the healthy balance between the educated conversation and the inane every day antics that keep people interested in a site like Twitter and keep the following loyal. Menshn however, despite the strong hook and sustainable conversations – I fear may find itself fuelled by the aggression and negativity we see in politics from day to day. You need to fuel both fires if you wish to have a successful social media platform.
Credit where credit is due, when you first sign on, you are impressed by the hive of activity that is already apparent. However, with its 500 million users and thousands of tweets by the second: Twitter has become a way of life for most people and it is doubtful anything is likely to knock it off its perch. It combines the two best features of Social Media – the virality of ideas, discussions and debates, and the babble of everyday life and occurrences. What do you think about Menshn and Twitter, and have you used it yet? Comment below to leave your opinions! And don't forget to connect with us on Twitter and Facebook!