Do you pay for

By Mike Maddaloni on Tuesday, November 27, 2007 at 04:10 AM with 0 comments was a social network before the term existed. The Web-based service to connect fellow graduates and alumni of schools, colleges and businesses began in 1995, and today they are owned by the group that owns NetZero among other companies. It has comparative features to other services like LinkedIn and Facebook, but has a much different business model.

I am considering deleting my profile from and thus I have written this post – do you pay for Classmates com? In order for you to interact with anyone on the site, you have to pay. It is free to setup and edit your profile, but if someone sends you a message, you can’t see it unless you are a paying customer.

Here’s an example. I get regular emails from them, and here’s a segment of the latest one:

image of email

Someone signed my guestbook – cool. So who did? When I click the link to get to the Web site, here’s a segment of the Web page I get:

image of

In order for me to see who has signed my guestbook, I have to pay. Of course I have no idea who signed it, if they are someone I know or if it is spam or a legitimate message. has lowered their annual cost to $9.95 from $39. But between LinkedIn, et. al. and a Web site I helped create for my high school class, is this really worth it? Isn’t my profile in worth more to them? For if I and others leave, wouldn’t the site becomes less valuable?

With the proliferation of social networking sites, how many can you really be active on? I am not on Facebook or others daily, and on LinkedIn I usually check the home page for updates every few days. Is worth the cost to you?

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