Google has launched a Friendster killer. Or, perhaps it’s best to say, Google, in its inimitable style (one passionate engineer working one day a week on a side project – I am starting to think this is a bit disingenuous) has launched a beta social networking site – Orkut.com. You will recall rumour had it that Google tried to buy Friendster a while back and F’ster took a better offer from Benchmark and KP. Now Google lets this cat out of the bag. Hmmmm.
The site is named after the engineer who started it (apparently he has been obsessed with this stuff for a while, including starting social networking projects for Stanford alumni), and is not officially part of Google’s product portfolio yet, according to Google spokesfolk, though Google owns the technology.
Update: By the way, the unique thing in this system, far as I can tell, is that the only way you can get in is to be invited by someone who is already in. And the first folks in were at Google. That in itself is an interesting plotline.