As a fan of http://www.peoplefromguam, I found this article interesting.
When I first left island in 2003 someone invited me onto this website. It was an interesting experience, because I realized then how my circle of friends at that time was very old and very low tech. I knew alot of people on the site, but very few of them did I consider my friends. I remember feeling very depressed because I would scour the site looking for people, and I would use any strange connection in order to add someone as a friend. ("I met your mother once!")
PeopleFromGuam.com creator looks back at highs and lows of rampant online growth
by Jason Salas, KUAM News
Friday, January 20, 2006
The best ideas, it's often said, are born of necessity. Hidden within the wealth of information that is the World Wide Web, it's difficult to grow an idea, being a virtual needle in the digital haystack of cyberspace. One local entrepreneur has coupled local pride and programming savvy to create one of the most thriving communities on the web for Guamanians all over the world, PeopleFromGuam.com.
Shah Amoui, originally from Sinajana, turned a lonely night missing his island home into an online project that's become one of the most popular for anyone connected with the island. "I built a web site for me and my friends, to communicate since I was back in Portland, Oregon and I didn't really know too many people out there. It was based on exclusive invites, but them after that word started getting around and e-mail invites started and that's how it grew," he told KUAM News.Perhaps most impressive about this project is that he's had rarely any mainstream marketing push, relying all on the viral promotion of his users.
PeopleFromGuam.com's traffic load now boasts more than 4 million page requests per month from more than 36,000 registered users. "I invited five of my friends, who then invited five of their friends, and their friends kept inviting other peoples. And then in about a month or so we grew to about 1,000 people, we had a 1,000 members online," Amoui recalled.He's also faced with the daunting challenges of having to keep the site's infrastructure (i.e., bandwidth, memory, processing power) up to par to allow PeopleFromGuam.com to scale properly in accordance with the huge traffic it now attracts. His site's ad-supported revenue model supports this expansion."We grow about 100 members a day," Amoui continued, "Our first problem was that we ran into was the space issue. We ran out of hard disk space because I started out with a very small server and once we hit, like, 1,000 people, pictures, the files we were supporting, our database grew huge so I had to upgrade that."And for devout PFG users, shah promises more content, more innovation, more fun, and more of what makes being associated with Guam so special. He proudly promised, "You'll see a lot more from us pushing Guam's culture, language, local businesses, local music, local products in our store. Lots to look forward to!"
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