Stealth startup Path has finally launched after months of hype, speculation and rumors; in many ways, it is the anti-social network. Calling itself The Personal Network because it is determined to go against the example set by Twitter’s follower model: you are limited to just 50 friends on Path.
It chose the 50 number based on the theories of Oxford professor of evolutionary psychology Robin Dunbar, who claims that 150 is the maximum number of social relationships any human can handle.
Path has received a lot of attention because of its founding team: former Facebook senior platform manager Dave Morin, Macster co-creator Dustin Mierau and Napster co-founder Shawn Fanning. But will this be a success. We will soon find out. Maybe users will still use this for very personal purposes considering that even I believe that all accounts in Facebook contain some friends who are not really close to the account owner.
Users may still use Path due to the power of exclusivity. But what exactly is it? It is a suite of applications (starting today with the iPhone) focused on intimate photo sharing. All you do is share pictures and three pieces of information to give them context: people, places and things. Pretty limited but then again, it is not a good idea to share everything to the public. Some things are just worth kept only to a select few.