Orkut— Gone but Never Forgotten

Jennifer R. ScottSeptember 15, 2021

Today, when you go to, you will be met with a brief goodbye to Google’s first social media platform, written by Orkut’s founder, Google employee, Orkut Büyükkökten So, what happened to Orkut? According to News 18, Google shut down the platform on September 30, 2014, “to focus on its other social networking initiatives.” However, there may be more to Orkut’s untimely demise. How did Brazil’s top social media site end up getting the ax?

The platform’s interface was sleek and intricate, but easy to use. It allowed users to connect with classmates and friends, while providing them with the exclusivity of invitation-only membership. Orkut was also the go-to site for those who wanted to connect with others in the technology field. At the height of the social media site’s popularity, there were over thirty million users on the platform. The Orkut method worked…until it didn’t.

There are a plethora of reasons that social media sites fail. A few of these social failures include:

  • Too much censorship
  • Strict user policies
  • Not enough emphasis placed on developing the social aspects of a platform

In the beginning, Orkut was a leader in the pack of social media success stories, but as the demands on social sites began to grow, the platform did not keep up. While other social media sites were offering users more options to engage with others, through blogging, gaming, and video sharing, Orkut users were faced with blockages and technical difficulties. In Brazil, this became a problem because Brazilians are more receptive to brand strategies that allow them to interact with others through sharing video files. For these reasons, the company stopped meeting the needs of its digital consumers.

An effective, strategic social media plan includes a mix of external analysis, internal analysis, social media strategy, and monitoring. If either of these components are overlooked or fail, that can mean dire consequences for a social media site. It is clear that marketers for Orkut did not thoroughly assess the situation, missing out on the opportunity to improve the overall customer experience. Hence, the social media site became social media history.

Clearly, there is a lesson in the downfall of Orkut. As social media marketers, we have an obligation to provide the best user experience possible. This not only benefits consumers, but it also benefits businesses who engage with those consumers on social media. For instance, improving user experience can attract new customers and create loyalty, while increasing ROI and creating a competitive edge over rivals.

Like the people of Brazil, social media users here in the United States are part of a cultural revolution that encompasses the many facets of various digital platforms. We want to engage with brands, and we want to connect with others who have similar interests. We also want to be able to do both simultaneously.

Although  Orkut’s time has come and gone, all is not lost. Büyükkökten went on to create hello network—the next generation of Orkut. Perhaps, he was listening after all.

Any thoughts?

#snhusmm #Orkut #DigitalMarketing #ProjectIdeaEvolution



3 replies on “Orkut— Gone but Never Forgotten”

Hi Jennifer,
My first initial thought of your blog post is “WOW- the visuals”. Each photo is relevant and it draws me in. I agree wholeheartedly that social media has an obligation to provide the best, most up-to-date enhancements for both content creators and businesses. When they don’t keep up with the latest trends, it’s easy to fall beneath the cracks of the social media world and fail. They were once at the top for a reason, but after some time, they weren’t able to keep up or “get with the times”.

Love the way you wrote your blog post. I think it would be a good idea to put your name on it though, in order to give credit where credit is due 🙂

Liked by 1 person

Hey Jennifer,
Great post. I learned a lot, and have a lot to take back into my own work. I liked when you said, “Clearly, there is a lesson in the downfall of Orkut.” I know that when Benjamin Franklin was inventing the light bulb he noted that he didn’t fail 10,000 times, he merely found 10,000 ways not to do it. There can’t be a success without failure first. I think that is a valuable lesson. That is why we should be learning a lot more from companies like Orkut, and a lot less from companies such as Facebook and Twitter.

Liked by 1 person

Great job on the blog this week. I think it’s great how you were able to embed the link to the article in your blog. Gives the user an easy way to check out the link with just a click of the button. I need to research how to do this because I think it adds to the blog and the user experience. I like how you mentioned that the platform had a membership, adding to the experience for people. In general people want to feel accepted and part of a community, using memberships helped with that. I also wonder if it helped limit the number of fake/scam users being added to the site. Seems like as social media sites like Facebook have evolved, so have the scammers with creating fake profiles. Lastly, I liked that you added that even though Orkut had failed that the creator had gone on to create hello network which I have never heard of.

Liked by 1 person

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