Friends Reunited is free, does anyone care?

Friends Reunited unveiled yesterday that their website is now completely free. No longer do you need to pay £5 (or whatever it was recently) in order to contact your old school friends. Of course when Facebook launched, and was free, everyone found that using Facebook was much better for contacting friends, old and new.

The entire site is now completely free to use including sending messages!
Stay in touch more with your current friends with your new Friends list
We’ve improved your profile page and made it easier to share photos and videos
You’ve now got your own Timeline to record and share the moments that matter
And did we mention it’s free to send, receive and reply to messages?

Friends Reunited had the userbase, they had the monopoly, but by refusing to change their model they lost everyone to Facebook. Now Friends Reunited stands as one of those failed websites. One of those Internet businesses that has simply been passed by.

Now no one cares about Friends Reunited. If they’d changed their business model years ago and made the site free they could have been the company courted by Microsoft and valued at $16 billion.

But they didn’t. They sat in their ivory tower and watched as their users disappeared across the road into Facebook, and then acted far too late.

So, to the guys at Friends Reunited. Well done on spotting your mistake, should have realised it years ago.

Darren Jamieson, aka MrDaz, is the Technical Director and co-founder of Engage Web and has been working online in a career spanning two decades. His first website was built in 1998 and is still live today.

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