The Unthink Social Revolution Begins

by Matt Klassen on October 31, 2011

Touting itself as the antithesis of Facebook’s draconian system, a rebellion that counters Mark Zuckerberg’s demand for obedience, a vessel for inspiration that flouts Facebook’s demand for control, and a place to lead instead of a place to blindly follow, the new social network Unthink certainly has a lot to live up to.

The self-styled social revolution—which launched in Beta this past week—is taking aim at the current quagmire of social networking options like Facebook and Google+, sites that at times seem solely designed to use our personal information against us.

So if you find yourself worried about what Facebook is doing with your personal information, if you spend hours trying to make sense of its ever changing user agreement, if you’ve suffered through a privacy breach and are wondering how to protect yourself, it’s time to emancipate yourself from social networking controls…its time to Unthink.

At first glance the Orwellian name “Unthink” seems to be an odd choice for a social rebellion, imbued with overtones of shutting off one’s brain, of blind obedience, and Big Brother-like dictatorial control, but the vision of Unthink founder Natasha Dedis could not be more different.

For her, the name “Unthink” refers to breaking the control that Facebook exerts over our lives, ignoring the message that Facebook is the way social networking should be done, and opening our eyes to the true potential of user controlled social networking. While Facebook wants us to think that it holds the keys to social networking, what we really need is to unthink everything we think we know about social networking, and only then can we truly be free.

It’s a bold philosophy; one that competitors like Facebook will surely put to the test now that Unthink has officially unleashed its social revolution.

So how does Unthink differ from other social options? To combat privacy intrusions, Unthink allows users to operate in different spheres, thus affording them, for instance, the opportunity to separate professional contacts from personal ones. The ability to clearly demarcate one’s various contacts will in turn allow users to closely control their own privacy standards, allowing them to share certain information with some of their contacts but not with others. For anyone who’s had their personal life come back to bite them in the ass at work, I don’t think I need to further expound the usefulness of this feature.

But is a social network with a strong undergirding ethic and mission really something that will catch on with the general public? As I wrote in late August when Unthink first burst on to the social networking scene, its no secret that there are serious systemic issues that plague current social networking options, from privacy compromises, the endless stream of pointless advertising, the always fluid and changing user terms, and of course the endless redesigns and pointless additions, so having a social networking choice that gives you the freedom and power to control your information will certainly appeal to some.

That said, much like the robot overlords in The Matrix Facebook has most of us firmly captivated in its exploitative fantasy world, so much so that the majority of us will never even know that Facebook is taking advantage of our personal information for financial gain. Truly, unless we see some sort of monumental blunder from the social networking giant, one that can’t help but rouse us from our social slumber, its doubtful Unthink’s laudable social revolution will ever take hold.

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Written by: Matt Klassen. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

David October 31, 2011 at 3:24 pm

I really like the concept of unThink however they desperately need to increase their capacity as their server(s) are clearly struggling. The general experience is slow and the layout daunting with no online help; even basic help to explain some of the terminology would be useful.

New users generally have a very short attention spam and will sign up and leave very quickly if they are not stimulated.

I really hope things get better and unThink can be considered a serious competitor to the FB & G+ machines.

Boog November 1, 2011 at 9:27 am

Right now there’s a lot of hype with Unthink but little to back it up. It is not easy to set up and has no real help to assist you through the over-populated screens.

It looks flashy but is so slow as to become unusable; I would like my revolutions to occur a bit more promptly. I know it’s Beta, but they should not have opened the gates if it wasn’t ready.

With the likes of Chime.In, Diaspora and the new Posterous biting at it’s heels, Unthink needs to pull something out of the bag or those Facebookers who are defecting to them will defect somewhere else.

Angelino November 1, 2011 at 12:20 pm

Hm is this some kind of ironic post? The Idea sounds nice, but the conversion seems boring. Boring things don’t work, when you want to get in contact with a bunch of people and convince them. Besides David is right, when you just dont help people to explain the tools, then there will be just the nerds. therefor its nothing to talk about as a tool to compete with Facebook.

Pam Moore November 1, 2011 at 1:16 pm

I agree with the other posters. I was very much turned off by the F-U marketing campaign. I have since tried to give Unthink the benefit of the doubt. However, your servers are too slow to endure. I really think with the bold in your face messaging you need to be ready to perform or you are going to lose your audience before you get a chance to begin. I have tried logging in several times and it has been slow each time. I requested password and email reset. A couple of the confirmation emails never came. I would focus on the core platform before you decide you are going to take out Facebook. Entering market a bit more humbly or even starting now would help adoption.

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