February 10, 2008
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When we saw this story in Foreign Policy about the leading social networking sites, we decided to write a description of Ebaby!, the Internet's only social network for English learners, in the style of the article.English, baby! (aka Ebaby!)
Where it's top: English learners. Especially in China, Latin America and Turkey.
Languages: English, Chinese, Spanish, Japanese.
Standout Features: As access to the Internet becomes more common in the developing world, so does the need for an international language. In addition to the industry standard member profiles with photos, blogs, instant messaging and comments, Portland, Oregon-based start-up English, baby! offers over 2,000 English lessons with streaming audio and a library of over 15,000 vocab words. The lessons and vocab words focus on conversational, real-life English (including slang)...which can be put to great use in the most popular feature on the site: The forums and chat rooms where people from literally every country in the world mingle.
Hot or not? Hot. There are 1.5 billion people in the world currently studying English, and English, baby!, which has been a profitable business since 2003, doubled its membership to over 600,000 in the last few months.
Ebaby! also recently launched Ebaby! TV, which hosts game shows and international human interest stories produced by the site (like a piece on a Ukrainian woman who met a Turkish man the site and married him). This
depth of content is not matched by another social networking or English
Also, check out this coverage of niche social networks in the Washington Post. It's really interesting to see how social networking sites allow advertisers to reach a very specific and motivated group of people.
More entries: Pearson Investing in Technology and Education in India, Connecting the International Social Networking Dots with English (1), The Global Market is Getting Smaller, English, baby! Given Site of the Month Award, TOEFL Practice Tests on Ebaby!, Do-Heon Kim, We're Here For You (1), Learn English with Prince Charming, We Heart Bloggers (2), Social Networking Going Global, Hot or Not: Social Networks