What if BranchOut became LinkedIn’s Waterloo?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x3aXW6GI1qE&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

“Should LinkedIn be afraid of BranchOut and Facebook?” is the title of a New York Times article from July 20th, devoted to the release of BranchOut.  What’s BranchOut, you ask? Basically, it’s a service that allows users to do business networking on Facebook (see above demo video).  Last weekend, I downloaded the app and tested it out (so you don’t have to), and in all honesty, I wasn’t impressed.  Pretty much, BranchOut retrieved (upon my accord) my various Facebook friends and re-organized them by their corporations, if one was listed.  Branchout not only reclassified my friends but also friends of my friends.  This is exactly what LinkedIn already does.

Despite my tepid reaction to BranchOut, I wonder if its release is indicative of a growing trend among social network users: instead of having various accounts separated by activity (personal use, professional use), they prefer growing one single network on Facebook.  Who knows, maybe BranchOut will make LinkedIn, well, out.

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