Friendster Founder May Be Too Late With Social News App

Friendster founder Jonathan Abrams Photograph by Paul Sakuma/AP Photo

Even if he never achieves anything world-changing again—which he is certainly hoping to do—Jonathan Abrams will always be remembered as the guy who founded Friendster, the very first Web-based “social network.” Launched in 2002, a year before MySpace and two years before Facebook, the site became a superstar among digital early adopters but lost its way and was overtaken by its younger competitors. Now, Abrams is hoping to reverse that chain of events with a new startup called Nuzzel, a socially driven news-filtering service he launched on Thursday. But while Friendster suffered from (among other things) being too early to the social party, Abrams’s new venture could suffer from the exact opposite problem: The social-news market is so saturated it may be difficult for Nuzzel to get much traction.

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