Dribbble, yes that’s three Bs, is a platform that allows you to share 400 by 300 sneak peeks on design projects (“shots”) in realtime, with a community of like-minded designers, developers and other creatives giving you feedback on your work.
Co-founded by Dan Cederholm and Rich Thornett, the Salem, Massachusetts-based Dribbble launched its alpha in April but is still relatively on the down low, since membership is invitation only. The invites (“drafts”) to become a Dribbble “player” have become a much coveted thing. From Cederholm, “We’ve been careful in giving out invitations, doing so in small, infrequent batches. That helps quality (the player drafts wisely) and helps scaling as well (we’re two guys bootstrapping this ourselves).”
Dribbble currently has over 4,000 players and despite or perhaps due to this exclusivity the community is vibrant, spawning many of its own memes including the infamous “hate” button. While design portfolio sites like Coroflot are nothing new, Dribbbe’s social functionality and active community set it apart. Fortunately for the rest of us, everything on Dribbble is publicly viewable and the only difference between a player and a Dribbble member is the ability to upload designs, comment and follow people.
Dribbble recently released its API and has been flooded with a slew of clients most notably Dunk, an iPhone app and Dribbblr, and iPad app set to hit the app store any day. Designer Jason Lynes recently devoted a snapshot to Dribbble etiquette, and there’s even an entire blog covering new apps.
In terms of future plans for Cederholm and Thornett, there are a lot, and even a few they can talk about.
“We’re looking into ways of making it easier to get great talent into Dribbble while still supporting an invitation system that helps us scale gracefully—and potentially to allow non-designers to follow Dribbble players with non-uploading accounts.”
In other words, they’re growing. Dribbble will be closing in on its 4 billionth pixel uploaded shortly. What other social network has those kind of bragging rights?
Image above: Jason Lynes