Two weeks ago, if you wanted to access Google Plus, you were out of luck—unless you had an exclusive invite. The same is true for Spotify, the European music-sharing service that landed on U.S. shores last week. These days, getting access to some of the hottest social media spaces is like bumping up against a thick velvet rope at a exclusive club, notes Jenna Wortham at The New York Times.
Rather than open up a free-for-all, start-ups and established companies are creating “invitation only” spaces in the earlier stages of product development. That could be a smart move. Limiting access to a few influential early adopters allows the companies to develop based on feedback, then capitalize on the positive reviews from those early users.
And although the practice isn’t a new one (beta testers have been around for ages, after all), the fact that companies are now making this regular practice is notable. Still, as with a velvet rope, no amount of exclusivity will matter if the later-comers aren’t impressed.
Read more at The New York Times.