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Ping Fail: 5 Reasons To Avoid Joining Apple's Social Network

Ping, Apple's new iTunes-based social network, is just the worst. Barely functional, confusing, and boring, it's unclear how or why anyone would get excited about Ping. Here's why you shouldn't bother.

Posted on September 2, 2010, at 11:42 a.m. ET

  • 1. Automatic censorship

    If you try to swear in the comments on Ping, it automatically censors what you've written.

  • Unless you write things like "buttfuck".

  • 2. You can't actually see what your friends are listening to

    Some of your album art shows up on your profile, but it's not clear where it comes from -- it's maybe your most-listened to music, but it wasn't for me -- and it doesn't tell people what you're actually listening to now.

  • Which I'd thought was the entire point.

  • 3. It's confusing and hard to use.

    The sign up is kind of a pain, and then finding friends is a dicey prospect -- I kept getting "no results."

  • This flies in the face of Steve Jobs' reasoning for not including Facebook integration:

  • "You can type their names into search or send them emails inviting them to join."

  • 4. No status message or other normal social networking messaging.

    You can make inane comments on things like the fact that a friend has followed you, but you can't post status updates. Not even related to your music. Or comment on what your friends like.

  • Also, two hours since I joined, my profile picture still hasn't shown up in Ping.

  • 5. It's focused on commerce, not social interaction

    Added to all of the above failures, it's clear that Ping is mostly about getting you to buy more music. The presence on the site of artists like Lady Gaga overwhelms your ability to actually interact with the people you know.

  • Oh also, there's no Farmville.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.