Digging into….MyBlogLog

Inspired by my examination of Digg’s business model earlier this week, I’ve moved the spot to MyBlogLog, which has been getting an awful lot of attention (see this ZDNet mini-review) ever since reports Yahoo was going to acquire it for $10-million. I’ve been using MyBlogLog for a long time as a tool to track what posts people are reading and what sites they are coming from, as well as a cool widget that tells you how many times a particular link in a post has been clicked on.
Mostly recently, MyBlogLog has been attracting users with a social networking tool that lets you add other MyBlogLog users to your community. There’s also a widget that tells you the other MyBlogLog users (including their photos) who have visited your site.
So, how does MyBlogLog make money? From what I can tell, it’s mostly from a premium service ($3 a month or $25 a year) that lets you see your statistics in real-time. This compares with the free service that lets you check statistics from the previous week. I suspect MyBlogLog’s push into the community/social networking markets has two angles: it attracts new users, which makes the company more attractive to potential advertisers and/or suitors; as well as creating a larger audience for the premium statistics services.
If you believe where there’s smoke, there’s fire, Yahoo’s apparent interest in MyBlogLog suggests the company could be the next Web 2.0 start-up to be snapped up.

Toronto Hydro Wi-Fi is Awful

Is it just me or does Toronto Hydro’s Wi-Fi network come way short of meeting expectations? First, the concept of having to get an instant-message on your wireless device to get a user name and password is just so user unfriendly. Although I do understand the concerns to collect this information to prevent nefarious activity on the network, you would think they could come up with a way to do it online such as collecting credit card information (you wouldn’t be charged but Toronto Hydro would have your information just in case you did bad things).
Of course, once you connect to the network, it doesn’t mean you’ll get a good user experience. Jeremy Wright and I are at an office at Adelaide St. W. and Spadina (on the edge of Toronto Hydro’s Wi-Fi zone) and he’s getting a miniscule two kilobit/second of download speed. I remember two kilobit/second with fond memories back in the days of dial-up. Anyone had a good experience with Toronto Hydro’s Wi-Fi dreams? Anyone got the seven megabyte/second speeds they’ve touted.
For more insight/news on how and why cities in the U.S. are embracing municipal Wi-Fi, check out the latest issue of Time magazine.

Is there Daylight for Daylife?

To much ado, Daylife has has officially moved into the news aggregation market. (See Michael Arrington’s critique). One thing Daylife has is cache given its investors include Arrington, Craig Newmark and Jeff Jarvis but I do wonder about its ability to differentiate itself from Topix, Newsvine, Google News, Tailrank, etc. I spent some time on Daylife yesterday, and it has some interesting features that hint at its potential. In particular, I like how photographs and related links are displayed, and how you can “train” Daylife to aggregate the news you want to see by using its “My World” feature.
One thing I do wonder about is where Daylife gets its news – something Scott Karp also questions. I did a bunch of searches and, to be honest, the results were, at best, average. To be fair, it is still early days. Jarvis promises a number of improvements will be forthcoming, including the implementation of RSS.
Daylife’s launch got me thinking about how Gabe “Techmeme” Rivera plans to expand his news aggregation empire, which now covers technology, baseball, politics and gossip. Will Rivera move into other areas such as health or business, and will he bolster the amount of advertising on his sites?
Note: For a more in-depth review on Daylife, check out ZDnet‘s Dan Farber (an “unabashed Techmeme fan”), who describes Daylife as “listless” (ouch!).

Technorati Tags: ,