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Facepopular, a ‘Popular’ Social Network Made in Argentina

[All links lead to Spanish sources unless otherwise stated]

The new social network Facepopular, created by six Argentine designers, already has thousands of users, not just in Argentina but also in other Latin American countries.

The website, launched on July 9, 2013, sets out it's objectives on their ‘about’ section:

El objetivo es generar un canal de comunicación e interacción comunitaria sin las arbitrariedades y modelos de imposición de otras redes sociales diseñadas y operadas fuera de la región Latinoamericana por corporaciones multinacionales..

Es una red latinoamericana, para hispanoparlantes, pensada y concebida bajo nuestros propios parámetros y estándares.

The aim is to generate a channel of communication and interaction without the arbitrary and imposed models that of other social networks, which are designed and operated outside Latin America by multinational corporations.

It is a Latin American network, for Spanish speakers, a concept thought of and conceived under our own parameters and standards.

The name “Facepopular” was not selected as a contrast to the existing and well-known social network Facebook; “face” derives from the acronym for “Frente alternativo contra el establishment”
(Alternative Front Against the Establishment).

However, Pablo Gutierrez on the technology website Fayerwayer says that “being similar to Facebook is a marketing strategy”, and that unlike on Facebook, on Facepopular there is a “Dislike” button and “icons relating to Argentine culture and politics to be identified with within the network”.

In the same article, Pablo comments on a video used to promote Facepopular:

En el video de difusión se reproduce la escena de Matrix en la que Morfeo hace que Neo elija entre permanecer en la matriz ficticia creada por sus opresores o liberarse y ver la realidad, pero con un diálogo en que se refieren a Facebook como la venda en los ojos para dominar a la sociedad.

In the video a scene from the Matrix is reproduced, in which Morpheus makes Neo choose between remaining in the fictitious matrix created by his oppressors or be liberated and see the truth, with a dialogue which refers to Facebook – in place of the matrix – as the blindfold used to dominate over society.

Pablo adds that:

[Facepopular] pretende unir a “quienes simpaticen con la idea de una Patria Grande, sin un sesgo kirchnerista” (por el partido oficialista [argentino]), aunque tenga todos los condimentos necesarios para quedar encasillada en el segmento de cibermilitantes oficialistas que inundan las redes a diario.

[Facepopular] intends to unite “those who sympathise with the idea of a ‘Great Homeland’ without the bias of the Kirchner-led pro-government party in Argentina”, although it has all the necessary aspects needed to remain typecast into the pro-government cyber militant segment that inundates the networks on a daily basis.

The webpage ClickParlante also refers to the ideological content of this new social tool:

La red social cuenta con contenidos a favor del gobierno de Cristina Fernández y agrupaciones políticas afines, y habría acumulado unos 400 usuarios. Por ello hay páginas dedicadas a funcionarios, temáticas y consignas kirchneristas.

The social network is filled with content in favour of [President] Cristina Fernandez Kirchner's government and political groups alike, accumulating some 400 users. There are pages dedicated to civil servants, and themes and slogans of Kirchner's ruling party.

In fact, the Néstor Kirchner Group, through their blog, comments on the future interactions with other militant groups:

estamos interactuando con todas las organizaciones que están con fuerte presencia en la Red, como el caso de RED NACIONAL DE MILITANTES DE TODO EL PAÍS, CIBERS K ADHONOREM, UNIDOS ORGANIZADOS Y CONECTADOS y otros grupos. En el caso del PARTIDO JUSTICIALISTA DIGITAL ARGENTINA, vemos positivo el trabajo en conjunto entre nuestras agrupaciones.

we are interacting with all the organisations that are strongly represented on the network, such as THE NETWORK OF MILLITANTS FOR THE WHOLE COUNTRY, CYBERS WHO HONOUR, UNITED-ORGANISED-CONNECTED- and others. In the case of the DIGITAL JUSTICE PARTY OF ARGENTINA, we see the cooperation and work amongst our groups as a positive thing.

The software used by the new network is based on the American software Phpfox [en], which is purchased in American dollars. Tribuna newspaper highlights this fact, considering that Argentinians are restricted in the use, possession and buying of the foreign currency and also in the acquisition of goods and services:

Si bien sus creadores aseguran que el portal tiene servidores alojados en la Argentina, el soft es norteamericano, y se paga en dólares.

Even if the creators assure that the portals have servicers based in Argentina, the software is North American and is paid for in dollars.

Netizens have also been talking about the new social network on Twitter. Eve Silva (@LaComandanta1) promotes Facepopular in Venezuela, where the number of users already surpasses the amount in other Latin American countries:

Subscribe now, an essential requirement to be revolutionary! // http://t.co/77Vpe17gmL and you can also follow us here @facepopularok

User Tere, from La Habana, Cuba, (@TsabinaMoreno) writes:

#Facepopular is an excellent alternative created by #Argentina for #Latinoamericana [#LatinAmerican] integration and against yanki spying #Cuba #Tropa [#troop]

However, Anonymous Argentina (@Anons_Argentina) warns:

VIA @venomcorp: DO NOT ENTER #FACEPOPULAR THE NEW SOCIAL NETWORK FROM #DELIA, THEY CAN READ YOUR IP ADDRESS AND LOCATE YOU IMMEDIATELY. COPY THIS POST

To gain access to the new social network, and make your own conclusions, you just have to sign in on the website. At the time of publishing this article, Facepopular displayed a message informing that “in the coming days new users will be able to register”.

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