Plurk: Twitter Replacement or Not?

I’ve spent a little time today playing with Plurk.  If you want to check it out, this link has an invite code for Plurk.

A few observations

  • The verb and emoticon drop-downs provide the potential for some interesting targeted search features, but I don’t think these actually exist yet.
  • This morning, the RSS feeds were mangled, but by the time I got around to writing this post they’ve been fixed, so they seem to be on top of the bugs & able to respond to issues fairly quickly.
  • The timeline view puts quite a bit on a page, but I’m not sure how well it would scale to 100, 1000, or more friends.
  • It would be nice if you didn’t have to mouse over every update to see the entire text.
  • You can leave comments on Plurks, but you have to click on the update to see the comments.
  • The Karma aspect is fascinating, but it is only calculated once a day. You get Karma by you and your friends activity on the site. The algorithm remains a mystery, which along with the one calculation per day helps prevent gaming, since it is much more difficult to see which activities are worth the most points.

While Plurk is interesting, I suspect that it is doomed to failure unless it finds a way to integrate with other services, like Twitter and Facebook.  I’ve enjoyed playing with it, but all of my friends are on Twitter, and ultimately your friend network is what matters. For this single reason, I don’t really see Plurk as a Twitter replacement.

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