Reliance’s Indian Social Network, Is Big Disappointment

Posted May 9, 2007

The Ambani family owns Reliance Industries and the company made $19.976 billion ($2.033 billion in profit) in 2006. Reliance is the first and only private sector company in India to be featured in the 2006 Fortune Global 500 list. They are ranked 342 in the world’s largest corporations.

Considering the reputation that the company has at stake, I was shocked to see the lack of quality in its social network, I look at many different social networks regularly such as Orkut, Facebook, Friendster, MySpace, Xanga, etc. so I believe I have earned the right to comment on what is a turn-on and what is a turn-off to users. Having this chap as my first friend is a major turn-off:

This chap is named Boss, he looks very unpleasant, and is not even smiling. Boss, take a lesson from MySpace’s Tom. When you view Boss’ profile, the number of friends he has is hidden so finding out how many users the social network has is not transparent. Tom on MySpace tells you right now that he has over 176,485,527 friends.

Considering the buying power the company has and admiration that India has for the Ambanis, I expected better. I do give the company credit for ensuring that the social network has the standard features: profile pictures, photo albums, add videos and blogs, and the ability to create groups and associations (addas). But another problem I see with the social network is that there is no privacy settings.

The next problem is that tags on the homepage do not function correctly. If you click on an individual tag, it’ll just redirect you to the videos page and not to the videos filtered by the tags:

The website appears to still be in a testing phase, so perhaps there is still time to improve the system.