Tweegee isn’t just a widget or a one activity site: Shay Bloch, Tweegee’s CEO.When the Olsen twins developed a line of clothes that targeted older children and young teens, the clothing industry realized that the Full House TV stars had tapped into a very lucrative demographic. It was called the “tweens.”
Worth billions in spending power, American tweens aged between eight and 14, are a powerful purchasing force reported CNN recently. They influence family buying decisions, and spend an enormous amount of time online. When teens of the past would plant themselves on the couch watching TV, talking on the phone, or writing letters to each other, today they’re spending a major amount of their time playing and socializing online – whether it’s chatting online with instant messaging, or building their identity by creating their own websites.
Tapping in to tween power
Recognizing the purchasing power of today’s tweens, and the need for a one-stop entertainment and social networking site, the Israeli company Tweegee has built a portal that delivers all the high-tech web 2.0 bells and whistles children demand, while protecting them from the dangers of the Net at the same time.
Tweegee allows tweens to create their own web pages, play multi-player games, show off on the webcam, send emails and chat, while reading the celebrity and gaming news that is important to them.
Targeting children aged seven to 15, Tweegee says its novel approach offers a creative and independent outlet for tweens to construct their online characters, while online communication is protected with technologically advanced safeguards, such as the company’s “WordUp!” feature, that includes both human and automatic moderation.
“The main thing is that we are not just a widget or provide one activity like other websites,” Shay Bloch, Tweegee’s CEO tells ISRAEL21c. “We are giving the kids Internet use beyond gaming, beyond what everyone else is doing.”
Built-in safety features
With resources for managing a tween’s digital files that are compatible with common email software such as Outlook, those who subscribe can create online parties or real events, while their parents don’t have to worry, knowing that in-built child safety features are installed, including an application that lets kids chat freely without the ability to reveal personal details or use improper language.
Tweegee, which was founded in 2006, began with a site aimed at the Israeli market, tipo.co.il. Today, three-quarters of the nation’s tweens play on the site.
In the wake of this success, Tweegee recently launched a similar site in English, which is still in beta stage. Already thousands of children have joined the English-language community, and the company launched a similar site in Russian, called Tvidi, last month.
The company, which employs 30 people in Tel Aviv and New York, also earned the US high-tech community’s “seal of approval” when it was chosen as one of the TechCrunch50, at an elite conference held in California that chooses the best and brightest technologies of the year.