Arun Stephens

An update on Zemobo

The reason I came back to New Zealand was to work on my own business, Zemobo. At the time, Zemobo was going to be an event-based social network. While I had done my research into the market, it turns out it wasn’t good enough, and there were several other players, including Yahoo! Upcoming.

So I went back to the roots of my idea. I envisaged a site where you could choose a time and a place, and read about what was happening there at that time. Sometimes you see something going on, but don’t know what it is. Well, head to Zemobo, and you might find that someone who was there had written about it. That’s the idea behind Zemobo.

Central to Zemobo is people posting what I call “geoupdates”. It’s similar to Twitter, and even more similar to Twittervision. In fact, as Zemobo grows, you will be able to syndicate your geoupdates to Twitter and any other site. You will be able to send a geoupdate from anywhere, but to start with it will be through the Zemobo web site. Just say what you’re doing and where. That’s the same as any microblogging platform (with the addition of location data). But what’s different is what happens afterwards. You can add more detailed text, photos and links to related web sites. Developers can write plugins or widgets or applications (it will depend on what the buzzword of the day is when this feature is ready) to associate other content into a geoupdate. You’ll also be able to link stories from your blog with Zemobo geoupdates, through RSS.

Today Zemobo lets you add stories to your geoblog. I’m getting rid of the blog metaphor, because it will never be a decent replacement for a blog. Instead Zemobo aggregates content centred around a time and place.

Because sending geoupdates are key, I am working on making it easier to send them. This will start with a nice big “What are you doing?” on the home page, and a mobile (and iPhone/iPod touch) geoupdaters.

As always, please let me know what you think about Zemobo, good or bad.