First of all, what a great domain name. Founders Keld van Schreven and Peter Brooke must have payed a stunning amount of money for diary.com. Right? Well, not exactly. Van Schreven told me that his partner owned it for years. Some Vietnamese hackers once stole it, but Brooke managed to get it back. Anyway, I’m glad to see these entrepreneurs really add value to the domain name, instead of just abusing it with Google Adwords.
Diary.com wants to take sharing away from the “noise of social networks”. The target group, female and younger audience in the US, UK and Asia, can share pictures, videos, and text messages in their diary, which looks like a Twitter profile to me, but then visually more attractive. When sharing a video (YouTube only), Diary.com depicts a small video player, and when sharing any image (just enter a url), the site shows a thumb. A diary can be easily shared with friends.
So who is already using Diary.com? According to the header, 3,066 people have started a diary. Van Schreven: “We have a handful of girls swopping shopping deals, a family diary who post every day, a few travel diaries, three girls who gossip in a diary all day long, a Japanese kid with a Godzilla toy fetish posts diary web links, and there are a few ‘lover’ diaries. We can’t read the content but we can see the diary name and the amount of posts.”
Although some believe the Facebook live feed will be the next Twitter killer, I think services like Diary.com also have a chance. They have a connection with the physical world, everybody knows what a diary is. A “feed” or “Twitter page” might sound too abstract for most people.
The London-based start-up based is angel funded ($600,000) and is seeking Series ‘A’. It’s publishing model is pretty classic: generate advertising revenue. Though I wouldn’t be surprised if they add a Premium feature later.