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August 2015

What the Hello is Ello?

Photo of a Pineapple

By now, almost everybody has already heard – and forgotten – about Ello, the ad-free social media site that became popular in the Fall of 2014. But the real question is, what happened to Ello? And why hasn’t it gotten big?

Ello is an invite only social media site, making it either:

  1. Exciting.
    1. OMG I have to get an invite!
    2. Obviously this site is for cool people only, that’s why you need the invite.
    3. Have you received your invite request from Ello? Because I have!
  2. Lame.
    1. Why do I have to get an invite to this social media site? I’m not even going to try.
    2. I’m not that desperate, I don’t need to get an invite to feel good about myself.
    3. Seriously?

According to the startup, the site received 31,000 invite requests per hour at one point. So, apparently, there were people who fell under the #1 category. I took it upon myself to request an invite, so I could see how this ad-free social media site was different from Facebook, and if I thought it would ever take off. It took three weeks for Ello to respond to my invite – maybe I’m not cool enough – but alas, I got invited in. I haven’t done anything with with my page. By the time I got invited in I was uninterested, I had moved on, forgotten about Ello completely (Although the weekly emails from Ello are a *nice reminder).

The ad-free feature was supposed to be another bonus. A social media with a Facebook type feel but without all the ads. Awesome, right? This could go two ways:

  1. Awesome
    1. No ads? Thank you.
    2. The retargeting ads on the right hand side started getting old after a while, there’s a reason I didn’t buy that dress I was looking at!
    3. Facebook is too concerned about money. Get over it and stop showing us ads!
  2. So what?
    1. Just use an ad-blocking software.
    2. Ads? Huh, I guess I don’t notice them.
    3. If you don’t bother them, they won’t bother you.

Ello should have figured out from Google+ that trying to replace Facebook will be almost impossible. Even Twitter (although, yes, it is a popular site) hasn’t totally replaced Facebook. Ads and all, Facebook isn’t going anywhere. But Ello sure has. It came, it tried to stick around, it got forgotten about. Sorry Ello, better luck next time.


*It’s not nice, it’s 100%, completely annoying.