A new people-focused content site called WikiYou launches this morning out of beta. Generally speaking it is a “wikipedia for people” with a social network bolted on. The focus is is on biographies and stories about individuals. Much of the content is wiki-like, allowing anyone to edit it.
The company, which was started by Bolt.com founders Jay Gould and Aaron Cohen, is very much like the unlaunched Spock, which we profiled here. And while they beat Spock to launch, Spock is in my opinion the better site. And there are lots of other competitors, too.
When you join WikiYou, you can create or claim a profile. You then add a picture and biographical data to the profile, and you can add friends. The main area of any profile is reserved for stories about the person (example), which can be revised by others. Stuff written by power users who’ve proven reliable goes on top and is circled in yellow. Everyone else’s content is below.
Spock, by comparison, has no story-driven content about people. It’s all metadata from other sites and user uploaded pictures and tags. Also, Spock doesn’t have a social network component. It’s pure people content and search. Still, Spock has already proven to be very interesting, driving people to add and vote on tags for people, add related individuals to create connections, etc. WikiYou doesn’t seem to have these attractions, and I suspect people will largely find the site boring.
WikiYou raised a seed round of approximately $500,000 from Mayfield, First Round Capital and Reid Hoffman in December 2006. Bolt.com also owns a percentage of the company in return for services.