Why I Like Ping


Last week, Apple announced Ping, calling it “a social network for music”. Like a lot of comments I read online, I thought, “great, do I really need another social network?”. After downloading iTunes 10 and setting up my Ping, I realized I do need (or should I say, want) another social network.

I like Ping. Here’s why.

  • It lives within iTunes. I care most about what music my friends are buying, listening to, recommending, when I am in iTunes
  • It’s focus is narrow. Very narrow. I am interested in music and learning about other styles of music. I can see Ping helping me discover music I would’ve not otherwise discovered
  • I actually enjoy reading reviews, they may not sway me, but I like them nonetheless. When the reviewer is also a friend of mine it helps put the review in better context for me. Being able to easily read friends’ reviews is a big plus

As a first generation social network, Ping has promise. Some improvements I hope Apple makes are:

  • Greater delineation of genres. This goes for iTunes as a whole. Rock and Pop are pretty wide. And there is no category for Bluegrass. I don’t consider Sam Bush country
  • Should have custom URL that will forward to iTunes app (rather than telling people to go to iTunes and search for... )
  • The ability to “Like” and “Post” about podcasts and audio books
  • Re-activate the Facebook friend finder. I saw it there when I first signed up but it seems it might’ve since been removed
  • Allow me to change my user name to be different than my billing name; “Matthew” is too formal for me

Interested in what music I am buying or recommending? Look for me on Ping, as Matthew Beckwith.