What is noplace? — New MySpace-esque Social App for Gen Z Surges to the Top of the App Store

what is noplace
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what is noplace
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Photo Credit: noplace

A new app called noplace is trying to put the ‘social’ back in ‘social media’, soaring to the top of the app store as a modern-day MySpace. So what exactly is noplace all about?

There’s a new social media platform in town. The app called noplace that seemingly popped up out of nowhere has become the top free app on the App Store upon its launch from an invite-only model on Wednesday. Designed to appeal to a Gen Z crowd, noplace is like a combination of pre-Musk Twitter and a modern-day MySpace, with colorful, customizable profiles and the ability to share everything from relationship status to what users are listening or doing.

Younger users who might not have grown up with MySpace have been delighted with noplace’s profile color customization, enabling the social media platform to go viral ahead of its public launch. Internet denizens, both old and young, are undeniably drawn to a sense of nostalgia for a bygone era of social networking.

CEO Tiffany Zhong has long had her finger on the pulse of younger social media users, having flagged Musical.ly in 2015 as a startup that would become the next Twitter or Snap when she saw how much traction it was gaining with teens and younger users. Musical.ly, of course, was the precursor to TikTok, having been bought up by ByteDance in 2017 and merged into TikTok the following year.

“I think that part of the magical, fun part of the internet is gone now. Everything is very uniform,” said Zhong. “I’ve always loved social,” she remarks, adding that social media doesn’t feel very social these days. “Everything is just ‘media.’ It feels very disconnected.”

With noplace, formerly called nospace, the aim is to provide a place where users can follow their friends and find others who share their interests in a single app. It provides a mini, customizable profile where users can share what they’re up to right now, and customize it to reflect whatever they’re into. Profiles can feature tags, which noplace calls “stars,” about topics or interests, to make them discoverable to others interested in the same things. Profiles also include a “top 10 friends” section that might remind older users of MySpace’s “top 8.”

Currently, noplace only supports text-based updates and doesn’t allow photos or videos, but this is likely to change in the near future. “Facebook 10 years ago — or Facebook when I was using it in middle school — was all around cool life updates,” says Zhong. “We don’t get that anymore […] You can follow [friends] on Instagram, but it’s still highlights, less updates.”

Zhong points out that noplace enables its users to share what they’re currently doing, not things they’ve already done. For instance, checking out a new band or visiting a new city are things about which a noplace user could post a status update.

Notably, noplace does not currently offer private profiles. But users entering their age as younger than 18 will receive a “more moderated feed.” The company is focused on moderation and built its own internal dashboard for specifically this purpose, with a team tasked solely with ensuring the safety of its users.

The app is a free download on iOS and is available in read-only mode on the web. Presently, no Android version is available, and monetization plans for the platform are not yet underway. The company is funded by investors that include 776 and Forerunner Ventures, and raised around $15 million in a Series A1 funding round. With a pre-money valuation of $75 million, noplace has raised around $19 million to date.