Hey, America, We Have Our Own Facebooks

It was launched as a network for musicians, but since Habbo's birth in 2000 the social networking site operated by Finnish company Sulake has moved beyond just connecting old friends. Using avatars, or personalized cartoon-like characters for role playing, users can visit virtual hotels and make new friends with people who may live right down the street. It's this local touch and sense of individuality that's attracting participants to smaller and lesser-known social networks.

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