State (website)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
State logo.png
Type of site
Opinion poll, Global opinion network
Available inEnglish
OwnerEqual Media Ltd.
Launched2014; 6 years ago (2014)
Current statusPublic

State is a semantic web platform created by London, UK-based Equal Media Ltd. Announced in 2013, and launched in 2014, State aims to build a global opinion network using natural language processing, databases and sentiment analysis.[1] It seeks to "democratiz[e] online conversations" by giving equal representation of each person's opinion.[2]


Equal Media was founded by Jawbone founder Alex Asseily and his brother Mark Asseily, who raised $14 million in seed financing in May 2012[3] from funders such as Atomico.[4]

State launched in closed alpha in May 2013 with around 10,000 users[5] and at TechCrunch Disrupt in September 2013 it launched an invite-only beta release.[6] When State launched its mobile app and the platform to the public in February 2014, it had about 30 employees,[4] most of whom work at headquarters in London. It also has an office in San Francisco.

Its advisors include Sir Tim Berners-Lee, Deepak Chopra, Troy Carter, Eli Pariser, Andrew Paulson, and Nigel Shadbolt.[7]


State has a large dictionary of "headlines", or structured expressions organized semantically. This allows users to opine more specifically, as Asseily explained: "The world isn’t as thumbs-up/thumbs-down as we may have imagined. They are adding texture to their opinions."[4] Furthermore, users can “tune”—i.e., follow— in to specific topics such as politics or technology, and can also import friends from Facebook, Google Plus, and Twitter. Because opinions are computer-readable, they can automatically be summarized and cross-referenced.[8]

Re/code writer Liz Gannes described it as an "interest graph" startup.[4]

Business model[edit]

Asseily envisions State "eventually becom[ing] a research-on-demand service"[4] with a "database that brands can access". For example, "insights reports" based on aggregated opinions could "aim to capture sentiment about a concept, brand, or event, which are currently free for State users".[9]

Examples of such insights include the following. State users generally viewed "Facebook as a whole" negatively while opinions of the company's new Paper app were overwhelmingly positive.[2] Regarding the surveillance disclosures by Edward Snowden, some people held conflicted opinions towards Edward Snowden and the Prism programme. As Asseily explained, "In general terms, some people who thought Snowden was a villain, also thought Prism was bad and likewise, some thought Snowden was a hero but that Prism was a good thing".[10]


  1. ^ "Graphing your opinion: Jawbone founder wants to data-track points of view". Wired. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  2. ^ a b Kirkland, Sam (27 February 2014). "Opinion network State launches with goal of democratizing online conversations". Poynter.
  3. ^ Constine, Josh. "State Launches Opinion Network where you don't need followers to be heard". Techcrunch. Retrieved 9 September 2013.
  4. ^ a b c d e Gannes, Liz (February 27, 2014). "State App Wants to Be a Public Opinion Poll for Everything". Re/code.
  5. ^ Solon, Olivia (28 February 2014). "Jawbone founder launches 'opinion network', State". Wired.
  6. ^ "State Launches Opinion Network where you don't need followers to be heard". Techcrunch. 29 April 2013. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  7. ^ "". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  8. ^ McKenzie, Hamish (31 May 2013). "Making sense of opinions: Celeb-backed State takes a stab at the modern forum". PandoDaily. Retrieved 2013-09-09.
  9. ^ Hockenson, Lauren (27 February 2014). "Got opinions? State wants to build a social network for them". GigaOm.
  10. ^ Gibbs, Samuel (27 February 2014). "State is more than just a social network for opinions". The Guardian.

External links[edit]