Peter Rojas and Ryan Block, the guys behind AOL blog Engadget (Rojas also founded Gizmodo) have launched Gdgt…which is not surprisingly pronounced Gadget.
Gdgt isn’t what you’d expect from the talented pair though, because it’s not a blog. Indeed, the reason I’m writing this post now and not 6 hours ago is because I’m not sure either. Block and Rojas are pitching it as a social network for people who like gadgets, but it’s not at all like Facebook or similar sites. The closest description I can find is forum with some social elements.
The launch of the site has gained a huge amount of attention online, even taking Gdgt down at one stage, so it should start with strong prospects. However its success will come mostly off the back of Rojas and Block’s rightly deserved reputations and not anything the site offers. The problem with Gdgt is that in trying to be different, the site is really very similar to existing sites through its borrowed elements. The question then becomes one of social appeal: can the community be the selling point given you get the same doses of gadget loving elsewhere? If I was betting I’d say yes, but only because Peter Rojas and Ryan Block are running the show. Anyone else and I’d say this was not going to end well.
The explanation video (they needed one to explain the site) as follows: