Social Networks continue to evolve with

 If you’re thinking of creating your own social network, you better hurry.,  today announced a new release of 2.0 beta available at The new release lets families connect online to share news, recipes, family history, photos and video in a safe, private and media-rich environment. 2.0 beta offers several new features and services, including the ability to leave voice messages directly on the site or narrate photo slideshows using a phone.


Since its launch in 1998, has enjoyed a subscriberbase of nearly two million members. Originally a free service, moved to a subscription-only service in 2001, and now with the new 2.0 beta is introducing a free option once again.    Families are using to build private spaces where invited members and guests can participate in sharing photos, news, videos, slideshows, recipes, files, family-trees and events. Many are also creating sites reflecting the social groups their family interacts with, including sports teams, schools, hobbies, or other groups. The new 2.0 site is currently available at andis in open beta for anyone to try out. One feature called‘SnapGenie’ allows members to select and sort photos into a slideshow andthen add voice narration by calling a toll-free number and clicking throughthe photos on their computer screen. These multimedia stories are viewable by family members on the site and can also be shared via email invitation to others, or embedded in web pages or on a blog.    For times when you want to contact the family and just can’t get to acomputer, the new site provides a phone number and PIN that you can call from anywhere to leave an instant voice message on your site.    Any member of a 2.0 site can create additional password protected sites and invite the people they want to share in the new experience. So you can have a ‘cousins-only’ site, or a ‘Family ReunionPlanning’ site, or a ‘Mrs. Johnson’s 5th Grade Class’ site to communicate,share photos, art, and upcoming events with other families at your child’sschool. Individuals can be a part of as many family or group sites as theywant and easily switch between them. 2.0 can also deliver reminders to your extended family forall the important events in life including birthdays, anniversaries,reunions, or other special events. And, if you need a unique gift forsomeone, the integrated shopping features let you order prints, t-shirts,mugs and other photo creations using the photos shared on the site. 2.0 free sites will be supported by advertising andcommerce. Members who prefer an ad-free environment will be able topurchase a reasonably priced annual subscription, much like the originalservice. Details of the subscription service have not yet been announced. As transitions to the new 2.0 version, members of theoriginal 1.0 version will still be able to use their existing family sitesduring the beta period. Many of these loyal members are also contributingto the development of the beta site by participating in member surveys,advisory groups, and the 2.0 blog at