Online social networks are usually all about bringing together people who like the same things.
The fouter, which bills itself as "an online community that prevents stupid people and friends from harassing you online."nder of a new anti-social networking site, however, is
finding that shared hates can be an equally effective bonding tool.
Software engineer Bryant Choung intended to satirize social
discovery services when he launched his beta site, Snubster, last
month. The site lets members create public lists of people and things
that rankle them.
"The whole concept of online social networking was really starting
to irk me," said Choung, who initially envisioned Snubster as a way to
stem the often irritating flow of invitations to join networking sites
like Friendster and LinkedIn. While such sites seemed like a good idea
at first, their usage too often devolves into "an attempt to get as
many fake friends as possible."
Snubster members, by contrast, focus on what irritates them. Targets
of discontent include individuals (President Bush is a popular pick),
groups (guys who talk at urinals) and things (bologna). Besides storing
lists, the site has a tool for sending an e-mail to someone newly added
to a list to tell them why they’re being snubbed.
Chuong’s inspiration for Snubster was a whiteboard-list that his
boss at Raytheon, in Northern Virginia, used to publicly name people
who displeased him. Like Snubster, the list was intended as a joke,
based in part on a recurring gag on the Comedy Central show The Colbert Report.
Snubster is among the latest in a series of sites created to poke fun
at social networking. Others include Isolatr, a spoof site that claims
to be "helping you find where other people are not," and Introverster,
which bills itself as "an online community that prevents stupid people
and friends from harassing you online."
By Joanna Glasner