Ning – Mode Media’s Stepchild

Image Courtesy
Image Courtesy

Ning has been left out in the cold. The turnkey social networking platform has not been receiving the appropriate care, attention and respect it deserves from its parent company – Mode Media.  Ning has been largely excluded from Mode’s master plan to become a juggernaut in the world of social networks.

Mode Media’s founder, CEO and Chairman – Samir Arora (picture above) has been in the process of reinventing the company and according to Arora, Mode is about to reborn as “a consumer social platform for curated content discovery with native in-feed distribution.” On April 28, 2015 the company launched a new product that is designed to find curated stories in a wide range of topics like fashion entertainment and cuisine. The launch of this new product happened almost a year to the day of Mode’s announcement about venturing into the streaming video business  with their own service, Mode Video.

The new Mode Media is centered around a parent website – Existing child sites like, and has been converted into channels of the parent site. For example, is now the channel So how does Ning fit into all of this? It doesn’t and therein lies the question. Does Mode now see Ning as a Competitor?

Mode Media’s Channel Lineup
ModeMedia - Channels

Ning as a Competitor

The increase in the number of niche social networks is a real and growing threat to powerhouse social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and of course Mode. More people are beginning to realized that smaller social networks do a much better job of catering to their unique interests than the popular social networking giants. Usually, close to a hundred percent of the content generated within a niche network is related to the shared interests of everyone on the entire network. That aspect of niche networks basically eliminates a very common problem users face on lager networks – irrelevant content.

The whole concept of Ning is centered around empowering individuals and groups alike to move away from larger social networks to start their own and that conflicts with the new concept for Mode.

What would you do if you had full control over one of your biggest competitor? Some might opt for killing the competition but a wiser choice may be to maintain the competition but do so in a way that makes it less appealing to your target audience. I think that’s exactly what Mode Media is doing with Ning at the moment. The backlash from shutting Ning altogether would be very damaging to the company’s image and bottom line.

The Million Dollar Question
Will Mode Media pull the plug on Ning or will they find some way to integrate it with their new vision?

Share your thoughts below.