Is Plurk the Twitter killer?

With a lot of focus on social media sites these days one of the biggest newcomers that is becoming more and more popular is Twitter.

Twitter is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that allows users to send "updates" (or "tweets"; text-based posts, up to 140 characters long) to the Twitter web site, via the Twitter web site, short message service (SMS), instant messaging, or a third-party application such as Twhirl or Facebook.

Twitter has gained popularity in the bloggersphere thanks to several high profile bloggers like Leo Laporte, Robert Scoble and Chris Pirillo. Each of these bloggers has over 10,000 people following their updates on the site. Unfortunately for Twitter their new found popularity has not been without problems. The service regularly struggles, goes offline and features get disabled. The backend has not been able to scale as much as the company had liked. TechCrunch used to post about these weekly but got bored of keeping everyone up to date once the company decided to open a status page for the problems.

Recently a new service popped up which is now taking the focus of the blogosphere, Plurk. Plurk is funded, based in Ontario, Canada, and has a team of seven people working on it at the moment, so you could call it a small company right now.

Plurk takes the Twitter idea of short updates and builds on it with better visual elements (a neat timeline) and many more features. The service seems fast, smart and has a great UI. Whether it can scale well remains to be seen but recently there has been a lot more signing up for Plurk and it has handled the increase well.

The question remains is Plurk a Twitter killer? If it gets the same kind of attention that Twitter has then it certainly has the ability to. The company needs to build a good API and allow for external sites to grab the data and then it will be in a position to truly rival twitter. What do you guys think, do you prefer plurking or twittering?

View: Plurk
View: Twitter

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54 Comments

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Nope... Just like there will never be a Myspace killer, Facebook killer, Last.fm killer, or iPod killer... Sorry guys, no matter how hard you wish it would happen it's not going to. Those services and products are just too engraved in consumers minds.

(C_Guy said @ #24.1)
MySpace doesn't need a killer - it will choke to death on it's own wasteland of digital vomit.
Well I guess there is that possibility. :P

Yeah, apparantly according to their image, the A-Team is helping them repair their system, neowin overloaded it!

In short, I couldnt even sign up, got an error that said they are working on it.

Neowin killed it...

Oops... The page you are looking for is temporarily unavailable.
Please try again in a few moments.

lol

What is with the stupid site names?!

.. You know what, I'm going to start my own website called scumbleblork, with blackjack, and hookers! In fact, forget the site and the blackjack. In fact, forget the whole thing!

you better trademark that name, otherwise in a few weeks we'll see a site with that very name!
haha i kinda like it by the way.

I never understood why people would write little snippets about their life "I had lunch", "I'm watching Lost", "I'm going to bed". Maybe I'm out of touch, but it seems utterley pointless

Only slaves and servants need to available at all times.

Then there's the fact that anyone can view the log of your daily life. I wouldn't feel comfortable with that personally.

Once there is a blackberry Application for this than I will use it.
Since I am out all the time, it would be great!

People use these sites? I always picture the majority of social site users as a bunch of 12 year old girls running around and saying "OMG my gramma is so old!"

Ha ha ha ha ha... Don't forget the child predators who harvest the sites for information that was freely and willingly disclosed to the world.

I succumbed to the Facebook phenomena. It was fun at first but all I get now is pointless pre-teen crap in my newsfeed. I guess there's lots of adults out there with nothing better to do than make up bumper stickers or quiz themselves all day long or comment on pictures of flowers.

*YAWN*

I like it better than Twitter so far. But I agree with above, if you have a lot of people, the time line view is going to get crowded. It needs an optional "list view" or something.

With AIM/YIM/MSN support as well as ping.fm support, is a desktop client even needed anymore? As it is now, I post to everything via ping.fm via IM or email.

(d3bruts1d said @ #7)
I like it better than Twitter so far. But I agree with above, if you have a lot of people, the time line view is going to get crowded. It needs an optional "list view" or something.

With AIM/YIM/MSN support as well as ping.fm support, is a desktop client even needed anymore? As it is now, I post to everything via ping.fm via IM or email.


I agree, the timeline on my plurk is already crowded enough, so that it's hard to read many plurks through that. It'll be better if they give an option to filter the plurks by users. Plus sms alerts a definite feature!! I love twitter's sms alerts.

What the hell is the point of these services. Why on earth would you waste your time sending little status updates during the day that are totally meaningless.

They are very useful for conferences or for breaking news where many people can send small updates via phone and they reach out to 1000s of people.

They are essentially like microscopic blogs. But by centralizing them into one service and allowing people to follow others directly in the app, it gains tremendous value. It's like LiveJournal, but access to the service is more ubiquitous and the API is used a whole lot more. As an example, I track certain keywords through Twitter (timdorr, neowin, and asmallorange). Using that feature, I've both responded to questions about Neowin and even sold people on buying hosting.

The only thing with Twitter is you don't find value in it immediately. Give it a few months, start finding more and more people to follow, and you'll start finding the value that's there

Plurk's timeline is awful. If you follow a lot of people, it's going to get crowded and hard to read. Not being able to see all of a plurk is the result of this weird timeline. The lack of a desktop client is also annoying. I wouldn't even use Twitter if it wasn't for Twitterrific.

The only benefit is that Plurk is funded and therefore can scale the service as it grows. But there are no ads or anything, so I don't see how the investors are going to get any return on their money.

You can set up groups and view subsets of the timeline:

Cliques make it easy to send plurks to a group of people. You can even filter your timeline via cliques.

(Tim Jerkface Dorr said @ #3.1)
Twitter is funded too. A lot more than Plurk is, in fact.

Whoops, must have missed that news. Doesn't seem to be helping though :P