The Jakarta Globe
If the music world has Billboard charts and the film world has box office numbers as reliable ways to measure success, social media now has Starcount to gauge popularity.
Launched on May 31 by Singapore-based company All the Worlds Entertainment, Starcount lets users of 11 social media platforms — Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+, Orkut, Renren, Tencent Weibo, Sina Weibo, Youku, Mixi and Vkontakte — pick their favorite people on those platforms. Starcount users can choose fun, insightful or influential individuals in many fields, including fashion, film, music, sports, gaming, TV, brands and politics.
The chart can be accessed from any desktop on www.starcount.com, but it’s also available as a free application on Apple iOS devices. Starcount is touting the fact that although it is a global chart, it also gives a nod to popular users in specific countries. Browsing around the website, you can discover who’s currently popular in Singapore, Indonesia, Brazil, Argentina, Spain, the United States and many other countries. Users can even combine the geography and field of work categories, allowing them to keep tabs on social media “stars” across a wide range of disciplines.
The system took two years to prepare, according to Drew Thomson, joint chief executive for All The Worlds Entertainment.
“And the chart is changing every day,” Thomson said. “Every day you can discover someone new.”
The company has bigger plans than just keeping track of who’s hot on Facebook at any given moment, though. Starcount hopes to create a new type of awards show based on honoring social media’s brightest. The inaugural Social Star Awards are already being planned for Singapore sometime in the near future. The company will invite the most popular people on social media to a gala awards ceremony similar to the Grammys or Oscars.
Joint chief executive Paul Morrison said the event will be a multi-genre show that will include the top fans who helped their favorite personalities reach the highest rank on the charts.
It could be an idea whose time has come, if outside interest is any gauge. Morrison said the company had already scored a content partnership with BBC Worldwide, which has agreed to broadcast the event.
So far, Starcount is serious about reaching voters from other countries. Its website is currently available in English, Russian and Chinese, with Portuguese, Hindi and Spanish in the works.