Does anyone know…

… what would be a good website to start a group that’s limited to one family? I’ve had this notion for awhile of a site where my sister and I and our cousins could put up photos and send messages and stuff. I don’t really like MySpace. I’m familiar enough with Yahoo and Google’s groups, but am not convinced either is the best. I checked out yesterday (because of the ads I hear all the time on Marketplace); it’s geared toward the over-30 set, which we all are by now. But I couldn’t really tell anything because I don’t know anyone on

Anyone ever try something like this? I’m almost thinking of it as a virtual family reunion. Since we live in at least four states, it would be way cheaper than an actual family reunion, which we’ve been talking about for years now.

Also worth knowing: Is this one of those ideas that sounds good but is doomed to become an albatross around one’s neck if not an abject, ignored failure? (Yes, I have such high hopes.)


About songdogmi

I'm a longhaired almost-hippie stuck in the inner suburbs of a major rust-belt metropolis who's thoughtful, creative, and kind of geeky. In exchange for a paycheck I run around in a cubicle maze most days. When I escape, I play music, hang out in coffee houses, dink around on the computer, take naps, and think I should be off in the woods somewhere. Every once in a while I get in my car and drive far, far away, though I've always come back so far.
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12 Responses to Does anyone know…

  1. ferndalealex says:

    An aquaintence started a family group on Facebook…so I guess it just matters where the family already gathers online.

    • songdogmi says:

      Perhaps best to find out where they already hang out online… except I would fully expect some to be on Yahoo, some on AOL, some on MySpace or Facebook…. there are too many options sometimes.

  2. altivo says:

    It won’t work unless everyone who expects (or whom you expect) to be involved is computer and internet literate enough to make it work.

    Given that qualification, you could use any of a number of networking sites, even Livejournal. If photo sharing is the main object, then a photo-oriented site like Flickr might be preferable, but other than that, just about any blogging or social networking site could be used.

    • songdogmi says:

      I’m pretty sure most of us are into computers enough to handle a reasonably well-designed site (which lets out a few sites, of course). I think it might be challenging to come up with one that everyone finds convenient to use. When I was considering changing my music website around, I thought it might be cool to turn it into a Google group… only to realize that there are a lot more people on Yahoo, and making people get yet another membership to something would be a possible barrier to their participation.

      Flickr might be an option; I think photos would be more popular for us to share than anything else. But I’d like some text capability too. LJ is almost too text-oriented; the photo features aren’t as simple as I’d like for this purpose.

      You’re right, though. A lot of things *could* work. As I replied to Alex, it might be best to see what might already be existing. See, my Louisville cousins belong to a family of eight, so they may have something already, or still have what they used in the ’90s.

      • altivo says:

        Flickr has pretty substantial comment capabilities where you can chat back and forth endlessly, but the beginning of each thread has to be anchored in a photo or other image. There is private messaging as well, of course, but that’s harder to share with a group.

      • songdogmi says:

        I’ve never really looked at Flickr groups before, but it seems to have potential. Hmmm. If it would let, say, Melinda post a pic of her daughter’s wedding and then write “It was a lovely wedding, Gatlinburg in the fall is almost as pretty as she was” … and then we could all say “Ooh yes, congratulations!” and stuff. That could work.

        (I have a very small Flickr page, kind of an experiment, but I put most pics here on LJ instead… see, I get how Scrapbook works, but I wouldn’t want to have to explain it to, say, my sister because it’s kind of kludgey.)

      • altivo says:

        Flicker has a much richer interface and is probably easier for most people to use. However, I don’t recommend it for dialup users (even though I use it over dialup myself) because it can be very sluggish loading that way.

      • songdogmi says:

        That surprises me a little, because it seems relatively light compared to monsters like MySpace… except there are features like the notes… ok now I see lots of items that would cause trouble for dial-up users. I’m not sure who amongst my family has dial-up, except for my mom *shudders* is a problem for her connection, so I’m sure Flickr would be the same.

        Still, there are an awful lot of Flickr user out there… it might be a good choice overall.

      • altivo says:

        It works OK over dialup, but you have to be patient. Regular use keeps a lot of stuff in your browser cache, which helps.

        The diverse options available on environments like MySpace or Furry4Life can actually be frustrating and confusing to people who haven’t spent their entire lives playing videogames and surfing the net. XD The majority of people over age 35 or so are much more comfortable with linear text and pictures, and threaded conversation.

      • altivo says:

        OK, I just went and added a comment to one of your photos and put you into my contact list. If you have the notification options turned on in your preferences, you’ll get e-mail messages telling you what has happened just as you probably do for LJ.

      • songdogmi says:

        I got a message telling me you’d added me as a contact. I didn’t get a message about the comment, but maybe that’s something I’d need to turn on. (Thanks, by the way. 🙂

      • altivo says:

        Well, we were both somewhat younger when that photo was taken, but “Woof!” was indeed my reaction. ;D

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