Remember Friendster? No one ever seems to talk about it anymore, which strikes us as very, very unfair. It deserves a little more credit for starting the entire social media craze. It didn’t get a movie like Facebook. It doesn’t get mocked like Myspace. People probably spend more time thinking about Bebo.
But Friendster, if you recall, started it all once upon a time. So what happened to it along the way? The site never really took off, and, having raised close to $50 million in venture capital, it was acquired by Malaysian payments company MOL Global at the end of 2009 for a reported $40 million, according to TechCrunch.
But after various reimaginings, it turns out that all the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t put Friendster back together again. So in a message to registered members, the company is asking all users to install a custom application to export all their profile data, as most of it will be unequivocally deleted on May 31, 2011.
But there are a few last gasps in Friendster yet. According to TechCrunch, the new Friendster should be going live in the coming weeks and will focus mainly on Asian users. Friendster CEO Ganesh Kumar Bangah told Znet that it will be repositioned as a social entertainment site for people to play games and music.
Sounds just like Myspace! Now there’s a business plan to aspire to! So nevermind, Friendster is totally making a comeback.