The Next Big Thing: Antisocial Networks

By: Murray Brozinsky

Abstracts of business plans leaked from Sand Hill Road, the epicenter of future corporate icons and home to storied venture capital firms named after tall trees and taller people about whom they tell tall tales:

Facebook for those who recognize the time is nigh to accept the unpleasant consequences of their actions. Friends who link to you on facethemusicbook are like pieces of paper with black spots on them. The more black spots you have, the higher your probability of winning The (Shirley Jackson-esque) Lottery. Stoning by friends and family requires virtual stones, which you can conveniently buy with real money in the facethemusicbook store, making the site’s schemers richer than Carlo Ponzi in a trading pit. Bernie Madoff is such an important revenue stream that he recently got equity in the venture.

Friendster for people who hate you. The site offers a safe haven for your enemies to plot against you. It has become a magnet for monomaniacal super villains bent on the utter destruction of some of our favorite fictional superheroes. Anarky, Batzarro, Catwoman, Harley Quinn, and Two-Face number among its sworn Batman enemies. The Joker and The Penguin involuntarily opted out when they opted into LockedIn (see below). Much to the chagrin of Foesters everywhere, Mr. Freeze de-registered when he became Governor of California.

Sixdegrees for people who have no friends. The chain of introductions required to reach your desired target is so daunting few ever even try. Members are fond of playing Sixteen Degrees of Alvin Tostig. Nobody has ever won. Ferris Bueller? B u e l l e r? B u e l l e r? There’s not a chance in Shermer High hell that Bueller’s a member.

MeetUp for people who want to hook up with people in meatspace and beat them senseless. Some example BeatUps include: BeatUp Enron, meeting in Houston; BeatUp Fannie & Freddie meeting in Washington, D.C.; BeatUp the Bailout, formerly meeting on Wall Street — next up Detroit. Barney BeatUps used to mean people with bats running down the street after a purple T. rex. Now they mean people with bats chasing after the Congressman from the fourth congressional district of Massachusetts. Curiously, both involve mean people and not-so-funny dinosaurs.

BlackPlanet for those who still believe Bill Clinton is the first black President of the United States. Bill is the sole member. Weblogs show Jesse Jackson has repeatedly visited the registration page, along with Al Sharpton, and Alan Keyes. Keyes posted that Christ would never vote for Barak Obama. Christ replied that apparently Obama did not require his vote, and that, in any event, he was not a registered voter.

Eons for old souls who’ve dropped their mortal coils. Members are all dead, with inattentive heirs, on auto-renew. Extremely high margin business owing to no activity, no cost of goods sold, and no operating costs. It’s the closest thing to venture capital heaven — a highly profitable business without customers. It’s to die for. And for that reason, the site will ultimately surpass all social networks in membership, because as the late John Maynard Keynes said, “In the long run we’re all dead.”

LinkedIn for the digerati of the Big House. Everyone’s trying to get an introduction to the warden, who it turns out isn’t a member. The most popular question is ‘what’s the best escape route that doesn’t involve crawling through shit or swimming across shark-infested waters?’ The patent-pending censorship engine ensures no satisfactory answer will be posted. Paradoxically, the more offensive the customer, the more loyal and profitable he is. Bad is good for the LockedIn business model. Lifers get ten free introductions versus just five for those serving ten-year sentences. Death row inmates pose a challenge since modeling their “lifetime value” requires complex probability distributions and a lucky last-minute stay of execution. The site recently introduced video. Selections include: Shawshank Redemption, Escape from Alcatraz, and The Longest Yard.

MySpace for everyone but you. The tagline for TheirSpace is: A place for friends, just not yours. If you’re a forty year old female PETA member from San Francisco who voted for Hillary Clinton, TheirSpace is populated by a seething crowd of twenty year old, gun-toting boys from Texas who wrote in George Bush for a 3rd term. If you’re Richard Dawkins, TheirSpace is Joel Osteen, Rick Warren, Billy Graham, Tim LaHaye and some one hundred million or so other god-fearing Americans.

Classmates for the bully set. Membership requires an authenticated recommendation attesting to your asshole-worthiness from those you’ve bullied. Biff Tannen got in on a George McFly recommendation. Flash Thompson made it on a good word from Peter Parker. Doug Niedermeyer has Flounder to thank for his membership. Should be one helluva(n) ass reunion.

aSmallWorld for the dwindling European jet set and social elite who still have enough dough to make them set to jet no matter how bad things get. Many erstwhile members have traded down from jet set to JetBlue.

Tribe for people who need to buy their friends. “Please, please be my friend. Please. Here’s my PayPal number.”

twitter for those gripped by intense antagonism, hostility, and hatred. A 140 character bitter pill. Here’s a “harsh” from Thomas Hobbes: “The life of man is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.” And here’s one from a modern heavyweight of harsh, Mike Tyson: “Lennox Lewis, I’m coming for you man. My style is impetuous. My defense is impregnable, and I’m just ferocious. I want your heart.” Bitter is a service for friends, family, and co–workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent outbursts of rage. You suck!


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