The “evite” killer?

I hate evites. Here’s why.

Tonight Maryam and I are going to the Tango Diva book launch party. Everything is hunky dory. Right?

Wrong. The evite email that I have doesn’t have any information on it. It doesn’t tell me where the party is. It doesn’t tell me when it starts. It forces me to click over to the Web site to look at all that info. I really, really hate that (because I drag emails from people to my calendar to keep the date and I hate clicking away from my calendar just to learn pertinent information because the service an inviter used is trying to collect page views by forcing me to visit the site).

So, when I saw MyPunchbowl.com today — founder Matt Douglas was here to show it to Maryam and me — that was one of my first concerns.

It passed the test. The emails that come from MyPunchBowl have all the pertinent information in them.

But that’s not all. It far exceeds evite by including integration with Google Maps for location, Flickr for photos before and after the event, an event-store lookup, and other cool features. Maryam liked the ability to customize emails per invitee (evite doesn’t do that either).

Anyway, it’s going to be hard for MyPunchbowl to compete with evite, because evite is such a strong brand name and has so many users, but I’m cheering it on because it’s superior to evite. Please, if you’re going to invite me to your next party, use MyPunchbowl. My calendar will love you for it.

Comments

  1. What I don’t get is this…

    When I invite people over for a party, I know them. I have their email addresses. For those who have never been to my place and don’t know the directions, I include directions in the body of the email their grandmothers could follow.

    Whatever happened to KISS? Occam’s Razor?

    People are lazy and or think they need some nifty service to invite people. I either do an email or word of mouth.

    Keep is simple, folks. You’ll live longer…

  2. What I don’t get is this…

    When I invite people over for a party, I know them. I have their email addresses. For those who have never been to my place and don’t know the directions, I include directions in the body of the email their grandmothers could follow.

    Whatever happened to KISS? Occam’s Razor?

    People are lazy and or think they need some nifty service to invite people. I either do an email or word of mouth.

    Keep is simple, folks. You’ll live longer…

  3. Even if it’s a good service, MyPunchBowl is a terrible name. Evite is great because it is easy, short, and also a verb now. They really need to change that name or few people will use it.

  4. Even if it’s a good service, MyPunchBowl is a terrible name. Evite is great because it is easy, short, and also a verb now. They really need to change that name or few people will use it.

  5. @4…

    Too right. If the party was to really suck, people would really have a reason to say “the party went over like a turd in a punchbowl…”

  6. @4…

    Too right. If the party was to really suck, people would really have a reason to say “the party went over like a turd in a punchbowl…”

  7. I stopped using evite just cause of the whole “go to site, sign in” crap. Now I setup the event in Google Calendar and invite people. Works great and if they use Outlook or Google Calendar, or just about any other calendar app, it goes right in if they accept.

  8. I stopped using evite just cause of the whole “go to site, sign in” crap. Now I setup the event in Google Calendar and invite people. Works great and if they use Outlook or Google Calendar, or just about any other calendar app, it goes right in if they accept.

  9. I’m in the development stages of a “virtual book launch” and I’m looking for geeks to help me with the look and feel. Click on Cybertooth Tyger Book Launch on my website.

  10. I’m in the development stages of a “virtual book launch” and I’m looking for geeks to help me with the look and feel. Click on Cybertooth Tyger Book Launch on my website.

  11. The killer Evite feature for me (even with all the crap) and what the new competitors seem to lack is event planning. By that I mean listing multiple dates and letting people vote, thus finding the best time for everyone. The “Who’s bringing what” and other poll options you can use. I find Evite a capable tool to coordinate all those elements.

  12. The killer Evite feature for me (even with all the crap) and what the new competitors seem to lack is event planning. By that I mean listing multiple dates and letting people vote, thus finding the best time for everyone. The “Who’s bringing what” and other poll options you can use. I find Evite a capable tool to coordinate all those elements.

  13. Peter,

    If we were really to keep it simple, we would all ditch our computers and phones, stay living close to our parents and their parents and get rid of our cars and careers in favor of basic sustainable farming that doesn’t involve shipping food across the ocean… Hey, wait. I guess I see your point… KISS!

    Anyway, google didn’t keep it simple when they created, well, google. And iPOD didn’t keep it simple. Innovations like PunchBowl are poo-pooed first, then everyone uses them and spends their precious time clicking on something else. Nature, beast, you get my point.

  14. Peter,

    If we were really to keep it simple, we would all ditch our computers and phones, stay living close to our parents and their parents and get rid of our cars and careers in favor of basic sustainable farming that doesn’t involve shipping food across the ocean… Hey, wait. I guess I see your point… KISS!

    Anyway, google didn’t keep it simple when they created, well, google. And iPOD didn’t keep it simple. Innovations like PunchBowl are poo-pooed first, then everyone uses them and spends their precious time clicking on something else. Nature, beast, you get my point.

  15. If you’re into event planning, but are the lazy type that doesn’t want to deal with all the pain of being an organizer, there’s a cool new website called Planypus that we launched a couple months ago. There is back and forth live conversation, voting, and a wiki-like space for making your plans. The best part is any of the people that take part in a plan can be organizers so you don’t have to worry about all the details. Suggest an idea and let your friends flesh it out. Check it out! Oh yea, it works with rss, email, sms, gcal, and facebook and if you don’t want to get spammed it’s easy to turn these things on and off in your profile. We’d love your feedback!

  16. If you’re into event planning, but are the lazy type that doesn’t want to deal with all the pain of being an organizer, there’s a cool new website called Planypus that we launched a couple months ago. There is back and forth live conversation, voting, and a wiki-like space for making your plans. The best part is any of the people that take part in a plan can be organizers so you don’t have to worry about all the details. Suggest an idea and let your friends flesh it out. Check it out! Oh yea, it works with rss, email, sms, gcal, and facebook and if you don’t want to get spammed it’s easy to turn these things on and off in your profile. We’d love your feedback!

  17. evites? And geeks wonder why they have the stigma of lacking social graces. Next thing you know, geeks will be using them as wedding invitations

  18. evites? And geeks wonder why they have the stigma of lacking social graces. Next thing you know, geeks will be using them as wedding invitations

  19. LayZ: most of the evites I get are from non-geeks. I guess you don’t hang out with people outside the tech industry, but I do, and they use evites much more than geeks do.

    Mark: thanks, will check it out.

  20. LayZ: most of the evites I get are from non-geeks. I guess you don’t hang out with people outside the tech industry, but I do, and they use evites much more than geeks do.

    Mark: thanks, will check it out.

  21. Robert, I can’t resist encouraging you to check out TripHub (http://www.triphub.com) as well. We’re more vertically focused (travel) but the principles of enabling easy group communication and collaboration leveraging familiar tools like e-mail, invite/RSVP management, alerts, blogs, maps, etc apply. In fact, coordinating travel between group participants is arguably more challenging than throwing back yard BBQs. And with the annual US leisure group tavel market at $50BN, it’s nice (massive) niche with plenty of business opportunity ;-) Like Yan – we’d also appreciate your feedback!

  22. Robert, I can’t resist encouraging you to check out TripHub (http://www.triphub.com) as well. We’re more vertically focused (travel) but the principles of enabling easy group communication and collaboration leveraging familiar tools like e-mail, invite/RSVP management, alerts, blogs, maps, etc apply. In fact, coordinating travel between group participants is arguably more challenging than throwing back yard BBQs. And with the annual US leisure group tavel market at $50BN, it’s nice (massive) niche with plenty of business opportunity ;-) Like Yan – we’d also appreciate your feedback!

  23. Cause Scoble recommends this, I shall give it MyPunchbowl a try!

    I’m from Toronto, Canada… so I’m hoping this Google Maps integration would still work well for addresses in Canada!

  24. Cause Scoble recommends this, I shall give it MyPunchbowl a try!

    I’m from Toronto, Canada… so I’m hoping this Google Maps integration would still work well for addresses in Canada!

  25. Frustrated with evite eh? Come check out our new service – http://www.iminvited.com.

    I guarantee you won’t run into that problem. :) We also allow you to invite your buddies via email, AIM, or text message and we don’t send you unsolicited emails, sell your email address, or what not. At worst, there’s one newsletter that goes out per month if you chose to receive it in the ‘My Account’ menu.

    In a recipient perspective, you receive reminders regarding the event along with driving directions and were just about to implement API for weather conditions for the event date, which will be sent in the reminder email as well as displayed on the invitation with nice little icons.

    Brian

  26. Frustrated with evite eh? Come check out our new service – http://www.iminvited.com.

    I guarantee you won’t run into that problem. :) We also allow you to invite your buddies via email, AIM, or text message and we don’t send you unsolicited emails, sell your email address, or what not. At worst, there’s one newsletter that goes out per month if you chose to receive it in the ‘My Account’ menu.

    In a recipient perspective, you receive reminders regarding the event along with driving directions and were just about to implement API for weather conditions for the event date, which will be sent in the reminder email as well as displayed on the invitation with nice little icons.

    Brian

  27. Shamelessly I’d like to promote our little event planning service, http://www.whatstheplan.com. Clean design makes it a pleasure to use for you and your guests… and it hooks up with your Google Calendar or iCal program and RSS newsreader. We’ve spent a long time looking at how people use this stuff and think we’ve nailed it.

    Please check it out, I hope you will like it. Feel free to send me feedback at jp@rhombus-technologies.com. Thanks!

    JP

  28. Shamelessly I’d like to promote our little event planning service, http://www.whatstheplan.com. Clean design makes it a pleasure to use for you and your guests… and it hooks up with your Google Calendar or iCal program and RSS newsreader. We’ve spent a long time looking at how people use this stuff and think we’ve nailed it.

    Please check it out, I hope you will like it. Feel free to send me feedback at jp@rhombus-technologies.com. Thanks!

    JP

  29. Out of the same frustrations, we built Crusher :) The beta was just released a few nights ago (http://www.crush3r.com) and it deals with a lot of the frustrations around eVite and all these other sites. Yes, all the info is in the emails. Quickly lets you add it to your calendars. And no sign in, no membership required.

  30. Out of the same frustrations, we built Crusher :) The beta was just released a few nights ago (http://www.crush3r.com) and it deals with a lot of the frustrations around eVite and all these other sites. Yes, all the info is in the emails. Quickly lets you add it to your calendars. And no sign in, no membership required.

  31. It seems like everyone is launching some kind of eVite alternative. It’s surprising to me that one of them hasn’t taken over yet. We just launched our own site, BRADvite . (named after our founder, of course)

    Our approach was to focus on using high quality images as foregrounds and backgrounds, instead of annoying clip art. Also, we decided to really limit the features to simplify the whole things.

    http://www.bradvite.com

  32. It seems like everyone is launching some kind of eVite alternative. It’s surprising to me that one of them hasn’t taken over yet. We just launched our own site, BRADvite . (named after our founder, of course)

    Our approach was to focus on using high quality images as foregrounds and backgrounds, instead of annoying clip art. Also, we decided to really limit the features to simplify the whole things.

    http://www.bradvite.com

  33. Lots of interesting comments out there. We just launched a new evite-killer site as well because we realise that we’re not the only ones that are frustrated with evite. Ours is simple, and fast. No backgrounds or themes, it’s really just a quick tool to get your party information sent out, organize your guest list, and keep track of who’s coming (and who they’re bringing with them)
    I’d love to hear feedback on it:

  34. Lots of interesting comments out there. We just launched a new evite-killer site as well because we realise that we’re not the only ones that are frustrated with evite. Ours is simple, and fast. No backgrounds or themes, it’s really just a quick tool to get your party information sent out, organize your guest list, and keep track of who’s coming (and who they’re bringing with them)
    I’d love to hear feedback on it:

  35. +1 for http://yarp.com

    By FAR the easiest and fastest experience. I use it gratuitously throughout the week for things like racquetball matches and office lunches, etc.

    Also it looked like all the other services required a signup or some other form of various bullshittery – with Yarp, I’m done in a few seconds. It’s so… non-ceremonious.

  36. +1 for http://yarp.com

    By FAR the easiest and fastest experience. I use it gratuitously throughout the week for things like racquetball matches and office lunches, etc.

    Also it looked like all the other services required a signup or some other form of various bullshittery – with Yarp, I’m done in a few seconds. It’s so… non-ceremonious.