By Harry McCracken | Monday, June 22, 2009 at 9:17 pm
GameSpot cofounder, former Yahoo executive, and old friend and colleague Vince Broady is launching a new site called thisMoment, and it’s going into public beta tonight. It’s an interesting site that’s part social network, part media sharing site, and part Facebook application, and I haven’t seen anything quite like it.
thisMoment is about sharing moments in time–events from your life that may have just happened, or happened a long time ago, or even be in the future. It lets you do so by uploading photos and videos, grabbing photos and videos you’ve posted elsewhere (such as on Flickr or YouTube), grabbing other people’s photos and videos, and introducing everything with your comments. You can specify the time when they took place, their location, and even how they made you feel. And you can make them public, share them only with friends, or even keep them to yourself.
Moments can be on any imaginable topic:
And are presented in a sideways-scrolling format with a timeline navigator that lets you view all moments created by a particular person in the sequence they happened:
As you’d expect, you can comment on moments and “Like” them:
(The abundance of stuff to do leads to an interface that’s…well, tall: I had to scroll down quite a bit before I found all of thisMoment’s features.)
Vince told me that he initially thought that most moments would be quite personal and shared only with a user’s friends and family, but so far about 75 percent are public. It looks like it could be a nifty way to record a not-so-private event–like a party, for instance–with an a set of features that’s richer than what you’d get at a pure photo-sharing site like Flickr.
One of the best things about thisMoment is that it doesn’t force you to sign up for yet another social network: It uses Facebook Connect, so you can sign in with your Facebook ID, and there’s a Facebook app that lets you create and view moments without leaving Facebook. (You can also embed moments on blogs, and an iPhone app is on its way.)
thisMoment is free–did I really have to mention that? It plans to make money through content deals (there are already moments from Road & Track, and People.com and other sites will build services on the thisMoment platform). Context-sensitive advertising will come along later.
I ran across a hiccup or two while using thisMoment–when I tried to import my Gmail clients, Google gave me a warning and a cryptic error message, but it seemed to work. And like I said, there’s a lot to discover; it’s pretty dense with functionality. Overall, though it’s promising. If Twitter is about moments so fleeting that most aren’t even worth thinking about an hour or two after they happened, thisMoment is about recording the ones you and other folks will want to remember months, years, and decades from now. It’s a basically good idea, and as far as I know, nobody’s tackled the challenge before.