Microsoft invites everyone to try So.cl social network

By on May 21, 2012, 2:30 PM

Just days after Facebook’s record-setting IPO, Microsoft has officially launched their social network known as So.cl (pronounced “social”). The education-driven project was developed by Microsoft Research’s FUSE Labs and takes a different approach to social networking.

So.cl was established with students in mind and was first made available as a beta to those enrolled at the University of Washington, Syracuse University and New York University late last year. Rather than simply have another outlet to post anything on one’s mind like Facebook, Twitter or Myspace (in its prime), So.cl allows individuals to network with their peers and share useful information from both inside and outside of the classroom.

Well, at least that was the original idea. Now that So.cl is available to everyone, it’s likely that shared topics will stray from purely educational material into more general themes. As ZDNet highlights, the service could be destined to become another layer of Facebook instead of being viewed as its own entity.

On paper, it’s actually starting to sound a lot like Pinterest where people simply post neat things that they like. If it proves to be successful, Microsoft could have a real winner on their hands although at some point they might want to shy away from the “educational” theme.

To use So.cl, users must sign in with either their Facebook or Windows Live account to get started. From here they are free to post photos, videos, text or even start a video party to discuss findings with friends. 

Do you think So.cl will stand a fighting chance against other seemingly similar services like Pinterest?




User Comments: 15

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H3llion H3llion, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Coolio, as usual bit late to the game but then again, you are never late ey?

Its pronounced "social"? I thought it was something like "sokl" but yeah anyway. Time to see what this "sookool" is about.

Guest said:

Stupid name..

H3llion H3llion, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Yes it kind of is, like other Microsoft naming policies... Anyway requires MSN or Facebook. I don't use neither, specially not MSN (Facebook was getting annoying with all the posts all over the place baa, sucking life even).

ramonsterns said:

Thanks, but no, thanks.

Tygerstrike said:

Looks like MS might be hurting in the revenue dept. Im sure they saw the advertising success that FB has had and wanted in on it. I do not see MS getting very far as most "social" users are already on FB and prolly wont want to change. But you never know, there might be some hold outs to the power of FB and this could drag them into the social scene.

Guest said:

I really hope that one day this whole social networking fad comes back to bite everyone - companies and users.

killeriii said:

"So.cl (pronounced ?social?)"

In what language?

I agree with Atrix, something like "sokl".

Guest said:

If Microsoft has this Social initiative thing, then social media is dead.

:D

RW

Johnny Utah said:

Totally agree.

Jibberish18 said:

For everyone cracking at MS, think of this; Microsoft dabbles in almost all areas of business that can make them money, just like a certain other giant company that starts with a Goog and ends with an El.Only difference is, MS is usually late to the game and no matter how well they design this "new" idea of theirs, it never works out well because someone is already doing it and doing it well enough that 90% of the population is already enjoying it. It's all about money, expansion and security. Also remember, 1st Name Goog and 2nd one El usually enjoys popularity of its ideas at first because they're Google but many times they quickly decline never to be heard of again.

Guest said:

I have to agree with the above; Microsoft generally just copies other ideas, gives them away for free/low cost and slowly takes over or at least a share in the market. What is changing is that the market is now moving quicker and getting more saturated by the time Microsoft comes in, so their strategy is not working as well as in the past.

Guest said:

fb is already boring as hell. so.cl isnt gonna happen for me. actually, after myspace and FB, I've finally learned to quit this social networking nonsense. It isnt social, you're usually in a room by yourself. Its sad but its also funny. People think they are expressing themselves as an individual but in reality you've most likely posted an opinion about yourself that no one but the companies want to know.... and only so they can attempt to take either your money, or someone's money that has the SAME OPINION. The average user's posts arent even read the majority of the time... except by facebook to give you "convenient" ads.

"Going to the gym then Moe's!"

I ask, "who gives a shit?"

Tygerstrike said:

Well MS got into gaming and that went pretty well for them. This one not so much. Its one thing to innovate, its another to copy and paste. By the time MS gets all the innevitable bugs in their system worked out, the project itself will become comedic material for the late night talk show hosts.

Guest said:

"Going to the gym then Moe's!"

Now you have ads for mexican food on ur fb. Maybe a few people took 1 or 2 extra seconds of their time to hit that "like" button. Now facebook knows you and ur "friend" like Moe's.

RH00D RH00D said:

Why are some people talking about Microsoft copying Facebook or what ever... Don't you realize that Microsoft has already had it's fingers in Facebook's pie for quite some time? Ever notice how anything map related on Facebook is powered by Bing Maps? When comments are written in certain languages other than English they offer a translation, and it's powered by Bing. When you search something on Facebook, there is a Bing Web results option. Also, Facebook video calls are powered by Skype. So yeah... I don't think Microsoft is or desires to topple Facebook considering their existing relationship with them.

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