This photo- and link-sharing site has quickly become a darling of the social media world with over 23 million users who “pin” images and URLs onto their digital scrapbooks. In May, the Palo Alto start-up received a $100-million infusion of fresh funding from an investment group led by Japanese online retailer Rakuten Inc., which valued the company at about $1.5 billion. Analysts have speculated that Pinterest, which has struggled to monetize its popularity, may eventually go public or be bought out by another tech company eager to capitalize on the enormous appetite for visual images on the Web.
Of the hundreds of start-ups to take root in L.A.’s Silicon Beach tech scene, Viddy might be its first breakout hit. Known as the Twitter or Instagram for videos, Viddy has amassed more than 40 million users since its launch less than two years ago, and last month it launched Viddy for Android. Users shoot short video snippets on their mobile devices and upload them for their followers to watch. Viddys have to be 15 seconds or shorter. Justin Bieber, Rihanna and Britney Spears are among the celebs who have prominent Viddy accounts, and businesses are using Viddy to promote their brands.
10 (and, OK, 11). Myspace and Digg
These former stars of the Internet are trying to make a comeback. They debuted their redesigned sites in last year, and although the reaction in the blogosphere was positive, it takes more than good design to create the loyal community of users that made these sites winners in the first place. In 2013 we’re looking to see whether Myspace’s strategy of catering to the artists will work.