Posted April 28, 2009 9:07 am by with 1 comment

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Microsoft has announced the private beta launch of Microsoft Vine, a web tool designed to keep family and friends in contact with each other.

Now, before you start screaming “Twitter ripoff,” take a close look at what Microsoft Vine is trying to be:

Send and receive alerts. Organize people into groups – the sports team you coach, people who live nearby, family far away, special friends, and emergency contacts…Check in safe and well to let your family know you are okay, let trusted neighbors know you’re headed out of town, keep people informed of situations that matter, or share general information like the team practice schedule for the week.

What’s cool about Vine is that it’s not trying to be an alternative to Twitter, but Microsoft has clearly sat back and looked at one of the most popular uses of Twitter–spreading important information quickly among a users network. Twitter does this now, but if an earthquake hits California, getting any valuable information is like trying to listen to the Fire Chief give instructions while everyone else in the room is talking about the great sushi they just ate.

Microsoft Vine’s more of an experiment at this stage, but then again so was Twitter when it first launched. 😉

Take a look at the video demo then let me know what you think of Microsoft Vine.