Apparently there’s a Friendster for the elite. I’d never heard of aSmallWorld before reading this Wired article, but it’s been around for awhile and it’s apparently quite popular and useful. You just have to be royalty, or famous, or rich, or something.
Wachtmeister’s greatest worry is that the ASW site will expand too quickly. Last fall, it was adding 1,200 people a day until he closed the door to new members. Things have relaxed since then. Social butterflies who receive networking requests from at least 50 other ASW users are now permitted to invite people to the club. And Talal bin Laden has been contacted by ASW, asking the details of his “transgression in the interests of eventual redemption.”
Any such limitations on membership would be unthinkable for a social network like Friendster or Orkut, where the goal seems to be to grow as big as possible, as fast as possible. But in Wachtmeister’s view, those sites have become bloated free-for-alls – so open and inclusive they’re useless. Or, as Cheray Unman, an ASW member and former VC living in Mill Valley, California, puts it, “If I’m trying to find someone to look after my purebred Samoyeds while I’m in St. Tropez, I’m not going to ask some naked Burning Man hula-hooper on Tribe.net.”