What happens next?

Mega platforms for social networking have overtaken many of our lives, from email, facebook, twitter, and the rest. All have the common trait of being “mass” platforms, designed to be used by anyone, with very modest generally available customisation allowed at the fringes.

For most people, in most situations, this is enough.

However, every time something has been invented, that reaches a wide audience, and satisfies a generic proposition, someone starts playing with the tailoring. This applies throughout history, to all widely used devices from armor to iphone apps.

Bespoke social networking at the edges is about to evolve into a fragmented range of networks where there are substantial barriers to entry, and therefore attract a highly focused group, with a deep connection of some sort, who can network amongst a select group of peers.

Imagine a social network of PhD qualified nuclear physicians from a selected group of institutions, which excludes the University of West Bumcrack and its brothers. This tiny, exclusive group of geeks,  would love a social networking platform, an app that enables them to interact with the couple of dozen others around the place who understand them, but to date it has not been offered because it does not “scale” and the established rules for success of these networks is “scalability” which means it is capable of being monetarised. In addition, it would work differently, much more like a series of human interactions as would occur in the university common room, rather than being reduced to a series of quantitative options as is the case in a mass app.

The corollary is that if you are not in the “frame” for the bespoke app, you will probably never even know about it.