Introducing Tokoni, a Social Network for Self-Expression – E1

Interview with Alex Kazim, co-founder and CEO of Tokoni. Part 1, introduction.

Blogs are now part of our daily experience online. In Technorati’s 2008 State of the Blogosphere, a few interesting numbers explain the blogging trend:

  • 900,000 posts are created every 24 hours;
  • 75% of all bloggers blog for personal satisfaction.
  • 67% of all bloggers say blogging enhances their online social experience.

Another reality of blogging is that 60% to 80% of blogs are abandoned within a month. Blogs are almost like Tamagotchis: you nurture them with attention, or they digitally die.

Alex Kazim identifies the ephemeral blogging phenomenon as follows: Through blogging, people mainly want to share stories. Life stories. Drinking coffee is a micro-story that belongs to Twitter, but a life-threatening experience at the hospital for example is a profound life story that can only be shared through a blogging format.

Alex Kazim is one of the co-Founders and the CEO of Tokoni. Alex works to provide a better solution for those life stories to be told. His answer – Tokoni – is a blogging platform, and a social network at the same time. Tokoni supports the once-a-month blogger. The idea is to create a place where listening to others’ stories is as important as telling yours.

Alex Kazim held many executive positions at eBay during its blooming days, was President at Skype, VP marketing at Paypal, and is now launching Tokoni with his ex-co-worker and wife Mary Lou Song. Together, they are dedicated to build a new type of self-expression platform where emotions grow through sharing.

The depth of the social Web still remains to be explored. Tokoni’s approach, in many ways, reminds me of Moreno psychodrama’s experience, where sharing profound stories with others, and experiencing a positive secure feedback from them, can push the story-teller to a state of catharsis. If Tokoni can replicate some of those psychodrama principles, then the new story-telling social network could become a powerful place to share, one that would be heavily-charged emotionally.