I find myself feeling for Akoha something similar to what I felt about Standout Jobs when it launched in public beta: disappointed.
Not heartbroken. Not “wtf this is crap,” but more a feeling of “a team of computer programmers spent months in super-secret hiding for this?”
Added to that was the fact that both did a lot of talking about supporting the local community, but when it came to actually launching, they both took off for the other side of the border.
Based on the presentation, the comic on the website and Roberto Rocha’s article, Akoha is some sort of game where you buy cards and have to do what the cards say. And then you go online and tell everyone you did what the cards say. And then you feel good.
Mark MacLeod points out some of the issues Akoha will have to deal with, like marketing, user retention and monetization. I’ll also add authentication: How do we know that someone’s claim to have done something is true?
But the biggest problem, I think, will be keeping a critical mass that goes beyond the fad. People will be interested, at first, but without that Facebook-like regular activity and new information, I can see people using Akoha less and less until the playing cards start collecting dust at the back of the closet.
But then, maybe I don’t know what I’m talking about. TechCrunch liked it, as did Scoble. So maybe it is the next big thing.