If one puts
aside the popular online social destinations like Orkut and Facebook, there are a number of our very own versions. Whether you take Reliance Entertainment's BigAdda or a start-up like Yaari, everyone is competing to catch the Indian (and perhaps NRI) audience. Indyarocks.com, a social media site founded in June, may seem like one of the desi pack, but there's a difference. The site has announced a programme called 'Social Money' for its members, where you can actually earn cash by doing various activities on the network.
As part of Social Money, registered members will be paid 10 paise for each SMS they receive from a friend via the Indyarocks site, while the sender will get 5 paise. Indyarocks, which also allows members to upload and share their videos on the site, will pay them 10 paise per video uploaded. The uploader will also be paid 10 paise per view of his uploaded video. The viewers will get 5 paise for viewing a particular video.
Manyam did not share the number of members on Indyarocks, but said that the site doubles in membership every month. He added that 40 per cent of Indyarocks' members have registered their mobile numbers with the site and are active users of its SMS service.
Indyarocks is also planning to introduce paid blogs (one may recall that Ibibo uses this model for its blogs) by November 2007. Manyam adds, "This feature will be included in the Social Money program and we are working on it".
Addressing privacy issues in mobile advertising, Manyam said, "We will ensure that users never get any anonymous messages or any spam ads from us. The ads served to the users will be highly targeted and match the user profile. We don't want to spoil the user experience, so we intend to keep the video ads of only 5-10 seconds and the SMS ads would not have text ads of more than 40 characters."