It has become quite clear in the past few years that Facebook's primary motive is to make the maximum amount of money through advertising and rake in as many new users as possible.
Its pesky ads and usage of user data for monetary gains is no secret, but no one could do anything about it due to the complete lack of alternative options. But this might change now.
A new private social network named Ello.co has silently cropped up, and it promises to offer all of Facebook's basic social networking features, but minus all of the aforementioned things that are a pain in our hind parts.
Built by Kidrobot founder Paul Budnitz, Ello is a social networking platform that doesn't treat its users as products and offers them a chance for digital interaction without annoying us with the Facebook-like clutter.
The budding site may have a simple, minimalist design, but you won't see any ads on it. Ello also doesn't store any user data and Budnitz and his pals don't have any plans of profiting from it.
"We were fed up with other social networks —exhausted and generally pissed off by ads, clutter, and feeling manipulated and deceived by companies that clearly don't have our interests at heart," Budnitz said in an interview with Vice Network's Thor Benson.
"There’s nothing added that you don’t actually need,” Budnitz added about his site's features. “You can connect with friends, post, comment, message, and engage in a number of other content-related activities. The difference between Ello and other networks is that the interface is very tidy, very intuitive and fast. It makes just about anything you put up look great."
Facebook clones are nothing new, and several failed attempts have been made in the past to create alternative networks. However, one thing that goes in Ello's favor is that it is coming at a time when Mark Zuckerburg's company is embroiled in data privacy issues.
As a Princeton study suggested a few weeks ago, sooner or later Facebook is bound to lose its charm, and on paper at least. Ello seems the kind of service that can break this monopoly.
The home page of the site currently displays the message: "Simple, beautiful & ad-free."
While that sounds good, it should be noted that all the major networks initially started as ad-free services before giving into the lure of the money when mega traffic came. Let's hope Ello, if it makes it big, stays true to the reason it was formed for.
The network is set to become ready for general public in about six weeks' time.