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Ello is social networking platform currently in an open beta testing phase. Ello was created as a competitor to sites like Facebook, with founders claiming they will never mine user's data or display ads to users.
Ello was originally created in 2013 for a private group by founder Paul Budnitz, the graphic design firm Berger & Fohr and the creative technologist collective Mode Set. The site's FAQ claims it was made as a alternative to social networks which base their revenue on advertising.
"We built Ello because virtually all the other social networks were cluttered, ugly, and full of ads. We began to feel manipulated by the networks themselves -- many of our posts were never seen by our friends at all, because ads had taken priority. We came to realize that a social network that has ads is a social network created for advertisers, not for people. Every move we made was tracked and recorded, and every post we made was read and sold to other companies so they could show us more ads."
On March 21st, 2014, The Daily Dot published an article about Ello titled "What is this mysterious, anti-Facebook, social network?" On March 24th, the Vice tech news site Motherboard published an interview with Budnitz, who argued that sites like Facebook and Tumblr were "advertising platforms" and not real "social networks."
On September 10th, 2014, drag performer Sister Roma posted an announcement that she was considering shutting down his personal Facebook profile to focus on her drag persona "fan page."
The following day, The Daily Dot published an article about the Facebook policy. On September 12th, The Daily Dot published a follow-up article titled "Facebook's real name policy is dangerous for LGBT users." On September 19th, executive director at Radar Productions Michelle Tea submitted a post asking what alternatives to Facebook existed, to which several users replied linking to Ello.
On September 22nd, The Daily Dot published an article titled "The Great Gay Facebook Exodus Begins," noting that many LGBT Facebook users were abandoning Facebook for Ello. On September 23rd, a page selling Ello invites for $500 each was launched on eBay. On the following day, Laughing Squid founder Scott Beale tweeted that one of the invites had been sold.
 eBay – Ello Beta Invite
 Motherboard – You are not a product
 The Daily Dot – What is this mysterious
 The Daily Dot – Facebook tells drag queens to use their legal names
 The Daily Dot – Facebook's real name policy is dangerous for LGBT users
 The Daily Dot – The Great Gay Facebook Exodus Begins
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Sep 24, 2014 at 09:12PM EDT
Sep 24, 2014 at 09:22PM EDT
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