Is It The Last Straw App Or The First Brigade Social Network?

Attempting to find that next paradigm shift in social networking seems to be the name of the game in the year 2015. The first generation of social networks paying users for their content — including the popular Tsu, followed by Bubblews, Bonzo Me, bitlanders and Seen — were the first on the scene with a new twist. Now half way through the year, ‘polling apps’ seem to be the network du jour — with one headed up by none-other than Napster’s original co-founder Sean Parker — who was famously portrayed as a villain in the award winning movie, ’The Social Network.’

Pick a Straw

Straw 2.0 provides its users with a intuitive polling platform that allows them to post a question to their entire network to prompt responses delivered either to their inboxes or smart phones. Polls can be on any topic, and while each question is limited to 50 characters, you can add photos and also post across Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, sent by email or embedded into your website.

The StrawCast feature was the latest attribute added to the app’s latest iteration, version 2.0.  This functionality opens up one's polling globally, increasing its reach while gaining potential engagement and feedback from a more sizable pool of respondents.

Said to prevent spammers from taking over the network, StrawCast provides troll-free polling where voting is anonymous as are the poll posters' IDs. Additionally, polls are posted to the @StrawcastTwitter handle so you can see what kinds of polls are being generated by other users.

Political Polling

Sean Parker, on the other hand believes polling needs to be more niche-specific versus the general polling stance taken by Straw. ‘Brigade,’ a network still in beta with an undisclosed number of users has been described as ’Tindr for politics.’ It follows in the footsteps of the Change.org, which has shown a modicum amount of success in producing petitions in the social media space.

“Democracy starts when you take a stand,” is the tagline for the app. Described as “simple” and “snackable,” theSean ParkerSean Parker ecosystem presents the user with an issue, such as “Should the Confederate Flag come down” asking fellow users to take a stance with a simple “agree” or “disagree” button. One can also post an explanation or rationale that substantiates their vote, if they so choose.

If the user is on the fence, they can flip through the responses of other users who have argued both sides. Afterwards, the user can see a polling chart that shows the percentage of users that agreed or disagreed with his or her stance.

Similar to how political activists try to convince potential followers to follow their voting lead — if a user is successful in rallying a vote— they will earn a higher “Impact Score,” which is considered the basic currency of the site. Users can also start friending those who they find politically simpatico.   

Of the current beta users, each one averages over 90 stances. Users can sign up for the private beta online, and Parker stresses they will be adding features, such as the ability to start political activist groups.

Trendy or Long-term?

Questioning the longevity of these types of sites, one has to wonder if the youngest voting block — namely the Millennials — would have enough interest to use either one of these sites, on an ongoing basis. They both appear to be worth a look-see and while they have a fun element to them, it's questionable if either will sustain long-term interest.

Parker’s involvement seems to indicate otherwise, but for someone who promotes his network as ‘snackable,' one would have to wonder ‘where’s the beef’ and whether or not you would invite any of your friends over for a full meal. Readers, please weigh in, or perhaps we should consider running a poll on the long-term success potential of Straw and Brigade? Do you think the results might surprise the respective founders?

Comments
Jun 29, 2015
by Anonymous

What about www.poliverse.com?

What about www.poliverse.com?

Jun 30, 2015
by Ron Callari

 Will have to check out

 Will have to check out Poliverse.com - thanks for the heads-ip!

Jun 30, 2015
by Anonymous

what about Yopine?

what about Yopine?

Jul 1, 2015
by Ron Callari

 Yopine is another good one

 Yopine is another good one - thanks for the suggestion.

Jul 28, 2015
by Anonymous

We're trying to strike into

We're trying to strike into the new frontier with our social network called JellyChip at www.jellychip.com. It's a social network for charity that allows users to earn points and buy charitable gifts for free by using our site. All charity profits are paid through market surveys users get so it's a pretty self-sustaining system!