While Facebook focuses on all things present, Barry Diller’s IAC (Interactive Corp.) unveiled Proust.com to focus on all things past. Proust.com is a nostalgic, memory-sharing social network that targets nostalgic seniors. Named for French novelist Marcel Proust, it’s designed to help family members and close friends tell their life stories.
Proust.com prompts content creation from users by creating topic prompts based on the “Proust Questionnaire,” a questionnaire about one’s personality. It aims to paint a life story by asking things like, What’s your most memorable birthday? When was your first kiss?
FastCompany.com says the idea came to cofounder and CEO Tom Cortese after his grandmother passed away. “I had just lost [her]–we watched her battle dementia, and there, it was just this process of seeing memories go by the wayside,” he recalls. “It was like…there were so many stories I wish I knew about her life. What was it like growing up in Italy? What was it like going to an American school in the Bronx? When did you learn to drive? All these interesting tidbits that I wished I asked her [when she was alive].”
Proust divides members’ life stories into a series of chapters called “Storybook View” that can be purchased by its users as an e-book or physical copy. The chapters can also be viewed on a map by location or on a timeline.