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The Quiet Death of Ello’s Big Dreams


  • Ello, a social network launched in 2014, aimed to be an ad-free alternative, emphasizing user empowerment and privacy.
  • Despite initial intentions, Ello faced challenges after receiving venture capital funding, leading to a change in focus and ownership.
  • In 2023, Ello faced financial struggles, merged with other companies, and ultimately shut down, leaving users unable to retrieve their content.

Discussion (2)

marshalshoen profile image

Wow I do remember so much hype around Ello! The promise of a pure experience, being creator first, and basically counter-culture to Facebooks advertising model. I used it for a bit but it lacked a lot of depth, aesthetically it almost felt like I was in an art gallery, or some kind of stuffy/snobby social platform that took itself too seriously.

crissfuture profile image
Criss F

I was rooting for Ello, or at least the concept. It did seem like incentives were not aligned though, as the VCs wanted a return on their investment and the original concept made it so they promised their user base wouldn’t be the “product”. That left them with very few monetization options.