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When I first reviewed Podio , a social network designed specifically for use in business, back in September 2011, I was extremely impressed with it. It received our highly commended 9 out of 10 score and I concluded the review by mentioning that the sheer range of features available to users of Podio makes it useful in almost any single business situation and that it was a vital, versatile and price-effective solution for better internal business collaboration.

Almost two years on, those words still stand. Although Podio is now part of Citrix Systems (it was acquired back in April 2012), this doesn’t mean that they’ve sold their soul out to some heartless multinational corporation. Quite the contrary, actually. Podio has gone from strength to strength since being acquired — adding some pretty nifty features to its arsenal — and I still retain it’s the best way for businesses to collaborate. Allow me to explain why.

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’re probably aware of Twitter’s new restrictions on third-party developers. If so, you’re probably also aware of other actions Twitter has been taking which put the users on the losing end, such as shutting down the “find my friends” API for Instagram and Tumblr. Consequently, technologically-inclined users have been increasingly vocal about their disapproval of the microblogging company.

As a general result of this, App.net (ADN) was formed. Led by Dalton Caldwell, ADN offers something Twitter isn’t: to let the user be the customer, not the product. This is based on a simple principle: users and developers pay ADN to use the service, and ADN does its best to serve their interests, not those of advertisers. I believed in the cause and contributed $50 to the Kickstarter-esque project early on.

App.net’s funding was successful. It’s taken weeks of using it before I’ve really started to follow my Timeline, all thanks to Netbot’s defibrillate shock that revitalized ADN. However, I’m started to have second thoughts as to whether the service is a good idea after all.

And just in time, another option came along: Tent.io.

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