Social Strata

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Social Strata, Inc.
Type Private
Industry Internet software
Founded 1996
Headquarters Seattle, Washington
Products Online communities, Internet forums
Website Social Strata, Inc.

Social Strata, Inc., formerly known as Groupee, Inc. (and before that, Infopop Corporation and Madrona Park), is an internet software firm based in Seattle, Washington. Founded in 1996, it moved to Seattle in 1999. It is privately held.


Current products[edit]

  • - A hosted online community platform launched in late 2010. features the standard arsenal of community features (blogs, forums, chat, etc.), as well as integration with Facebook, Twitter, and a branded iPhone app for communities (limited to certain plans). offers both free and paid plans.
  • Eve Community - A hosted Java/MySQL based community system targeted towards enterprise customers. It is made up of four modules:
    • Forum (originally UBB.x) - A Java-based internet forum system first released in 2002 as a descendant of OpenTopic but used a MySQL database instead of Oracle. UBB.x became part of Eve in January 2004. The forum module has only been minorly updated since the creation of Eve community, remaining with the final UBB.x version numbering and largely the same feature set from 2003. It remains extremely stable due to this.[citation needed]
    • Chat - A live chat room system that was launched with Eve in January 2004. It currently requires flash to use and is the second version of the chat software.
    • Premium Membership - An integrated payment system to allow premium memberships to an online community.
    • Private Web Directories - A system to secure the contents/files on your website. Grant access to any users or groups via the member management system.
  • Social Enterprise - A hosted social networking platform targeted towards enterprise customers. Social Enterprise was launched in July 2009.
  • LiveCloud - Launched in 2006 and originally called Groupee (when the company was still Groupee, Inc.), LiveCloud is a social network run by Social Strata. LiveCloud runs on the Social Enterprise platform and includes various customizations which are specific for LiveCloud. is now a channel within LiveCloud, focusing on bands and music.

Past products[edit]

  • UBB.threads (formerly WWWThreads) - A PHP/MySQL based internet forum system acquired by Social Strata in 2001. Replaced UBB.Classic and the original UBB.Threads. On January 1, 2010, Rick Baker, who was the original creator of WWWThreads and primary developer on UBB.threads for Social Strata, regained the rights to the product and is now sold and maintained by Baker's company, Mindraven.
  • UBB.classic (formerly Ultimate Bulletin Board) - Social Strata's original internet forum system written in Perl and using a flat file system. End-of-lifed on June 15, 2006.
  • OpenTopic - A hosted Java/Oracle based internet forum system launched in 2000. The last version (3.1.0) was released in March 2004. OpenTopic has been replaced by Eve Community.
  • buzzcast - An HTML e-mail campaign creator/list management service, launched in February 2002 and discontinued in August 2003.
  • Groupee Web Hosting Service - Hosting included with the Eve Community.

Product naming[edit]

The OpenTopic product was the initial hosted solution by Infopop. It was largely replaced by UBB.x, a separate product that was an update to the OpenTopic software. UBB.x was more targeted to small to mid-sized businesses and communities who wanted a hosted solution at a premium price.

UBB.x then went through four major versions. In early 2004, UBB.x was integrated into the Eve Community platform. The module system of Eve Community was introduced with the announcement that many modules would be made available; UBB.x was one of the initial modules. Since the initial Eve Alpha testing in late 2003 the number of modules increased from two to four and no third party modules have been announced by Social Strata or integrated with the software as originally planned. As of January 2008, the forums module remains at the same version numbering it did in late 2003.

In 2005, along with a planned corporate rebranding, Eve was renamed Groupee Community.

A new Groupee Community "2.0" product was announced in January 2005 with an initial beta test announced for September/October 2005. It was originally meant to end-of-life the current Groupee Community upon its release. The initial beta period was missed and the product evolved into a completely new service behind the scenes.

In May 2006, Groupee Community was renamed back to Eve Community and will remain an available product, now targeted to large enterprises. The new Groupee Network has no relation to the previous Groupee Community, now Eve Community, or the defunct Groupee Community replacement.

The last major general update to Eve Community, as of December 2009, was in January 2005.

Future development[edit]

Social Strata's major focus is on the hosted community service and the LiveCloud social network.

  • QuestionShark - Social Strata is also currently working on QuestionShark, a turnkey help desk and community support service. It is tentatively scheduled to launch in 2011.


Social Strata, Inc. was originally known as Madrona Park, an internet software firm, founded in 1996. Its first software internet programs included the widely popular UBB Message board (now known as UBB.classic ). Madrona Park became Infopop in 1999, while moving its headquarters to Seattle, where many other software and internet companies had relocated to, including Microsoft. In 2001, the company acquired WWWThreads, and renamed the product UBB.threads. In 2005, the firm became known as Groupee, Inc. In December 2009, the firm became known as Social Strata, Inc. On January 1, 2010, UBB.threads was spun off and sold to Mindraven, Inc., with developer Rick Baker assuming full management of the product.

Management team[edit]

  • Ted O'Neill - CEO
  • Rosemary O'Neill - President
  • Lori Hope, CPA - COO
  • Brian Lenz - CTO

External links[edit]