If there is only one website management team in Kenya’s cyberspace industry that is always working round the clock to deliver, then its got to be the Mashada admin. I’ve seen the website transform from a basic phpBB powered forum t the country’s ultimate web2.0.
If you need to see a practical example of social media in action then this is where to go.
At the sign up page there is the option of using Facebook Connect.Facebook connect is an application that enables site owners to allow visitors acces their content using their facebook information. After accessing the site, you should be able to invite a limited number of your facebook friends, and even know of any of your friends who are already using the site. Plus, it alos publishes your activity stream on facebook wall.
One of the things that get to strike you at first is the twitter stream on the frontpage. Unlike most twitter streams embedded on websites, this one gives you updates from several users, and you may vote down or up an entry. Brilliant idea! Except that it may not be sensible if the tweets are frequent.
Mashada is in many ways like Haiya, which I reviewed recently, but from the word go, you realize that guys are more talkative here. The forums are well categorized( and “subcategorized”), and you get several responses on posting an interesting topic. Or any topic.
There is always a dozen ,or about, of people chatting in the Kahawa Chat. The chat interface has customizable settings for alerts, status and appearance. The desktop version is flashy, but I didn’t get the mobile version to work on my device. Maybe its the problem with the phone, or maybe the beta version doesn’t actually work. The system comes with normal chat functions like private rooms, customizable font etcetra.And one of the best things about it, you don’t need to sign up in order to start chatting. This is awesome for guys who are looking for a quick chat. But obviously you willl need to sin up to get offline messages and chat history.
Th blog aggregator is also commendable. It reads feeds from selected Kenyan blogs. I however don’t know their selection criteria because I tried getting a blog to be read but I haven’t got a reply yet.
Basically, Mashada is one site where you will not get bored, whether you are a normal person looking to talk politics or you are a nerd with time in his hands. It is not a just a customized open source script that was installed. They clearly know who they want to get there, how to keep guys there,armed with the latest skill on social media and good programming knowledge. Good work guys.