Uzbekistan Sets Up Rival To Facebook

YouFace is the name of a new social networking site that aims to lure local Internet users away from Facebook, and "boost patriotism among young people in Uzbekistan."

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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And today's last word in business comes from the Central Asian country of Uzbekistan, which by the way, won six medals in the last Olympics. But today's last word is about another kind of competition, this one between social networking sites. And the word is: YouFace. That's the name of a new social networking site that aims to lure local Internet users away from Facebook, and, quote, "boost patriotism among young people in Uzbekistan."

The name YouFace may sound familiar to fans of the program "30 Rock." A few years ago, an episode of that NBC sitcom poked fun at social networks and used the term YouFace as a parody.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "30 ROCK")

ALEC BALDWIN: (Jack Donaghy) The company has acquired an up-and-coming social networking site called YouFace. So each executive has to set up their YouFace page. Now this picture will be my PhoLo.

TINA FEY: (as Liz Lemon) Not a word.

BALDWIN: (Jack Donaghy) Which is a contraction for photo and hello. YouFace. Who are you facing?

(LAUGHTER)

INSKEEP: Uzbekistan's YouFace site boasts a quote by the country's president, who is known more for suppressing political opposition than supporting Internet freedom. As you may imagine, some people are a bit leery of accepting YouFace friend requests.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And that's the business news on MORNING EDITION from NPR News.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: I'm Steve Inskeep.

MONTAGNE: And I'm Renee Montagne.

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