“Finally, gay personals that treat you like a person,” the site says. Lovetastic says its goal is to bring together husbands. It used to be called Scene404 and the old landing page is pretty cute, in a dorky kind of way.
Free account holders can post profiles, browse the site and receive messages. Paid accounts, starting at $6 per month, enable users to send messages and chat.
Lovetastic’s interface is the cleanest, simplest and easiest on the eyes of any of these sites. In some ways it’s got more class than any of them. There are randomly generated interview questions for profiles and nude or shirtless pictures are prohibited. The site is ad free. If this is the site for you, you’ll likely know as soon as you visit it.
Connexion is LGBT online networking with suffix. There’s an RSS feed for news from the site. The site is a little awkward but not highly sexualized. Transgendered identity is supported on this site but not gender queer identities outside of those based on the Male/Female binary.
There aren’t paid memberships available for this nonprofit site but there are a handful of very unobtrusive ads. If you’re looking for news and political discussion in your LGBT social networking check out Connexion. OutEverywhere
OutEverywhere is a paid service for men and women in select countries around the world. It is very text intensive, site navigation is unbearable. This site has an emphasis on promoting real world events and venues. I couldn’t handle looking at it very much but there is a tag cloud if you scroll way down on the front page! Memberships are ? for 6 months with a 28 free trial period.
In addition to dating and events organizing the site focuses on low level political activity and news
DList looks like it was designed by someone from Gawker – in fact I’m sure it was. It’s a pretty straightforward social networking site with a good feature set. User blogs, topical site blogs to read, a music player on profile pages. It’s ad supported without premium accounts.
Without seeing more of what the community is like on DList, I imagine this site will be succeed if it can keep its costs down. It’s got all the basics taken care of and is attractive. BigJock
The site that inspired this post, BigJock, will launch its full hookupdate.net/it/tsdates-review featured version on early next month. The version that’s already up looks very nice though. It will include all the basics plus a Hot or Not picture rating component. The site will be free and ad supported. You can sign up now for an account and enter to win an iPod. BigJock has a long way to go before it can compete with the heavyweights above, but anything is possible and there are clearly niche approaches underway throughout the gay male social networking market. And that monkey logo is not to be missed.
It lead us to take a look around the gay male online social networking space and write the following overview of some of the current market leaders
Niche social networks are likely a viable business because they allow specialized functionality and a subjective community feel as opposed to general interest sites that defer to either the lowest common denominator or the 15-25 year old demographic. Many people want to participate in social networks, but many people prefer networks set up for people they can relate to. That makes sense to me. From the proudly professional to the happily hedonistic, there may be something on this list for everyone – or at least everyone who’s a gay man.