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Social Networking Website Giving Back to Community

Social Networking Website Giving Back to Community

A new website aims to generate charitable donations while helping LGBT folks network.

Matt Small started his new LGBT social networking website,, with a few things in mind: "security, philanthropy, quality, and community awareness." The LGBT ally has spent the past 19 months developing the site, which was created from a dual perspective of safety and charity.

The subscription fee of $9.95 a month (even less if you make a couple referrals) doesn't just pay for heightened security. While the proprietary encryption and credit card matching are nice, "10% of all subscription fees are given to LGBT nonprofit organizations that create awareness of LGBT issues," Small said.

Small started the website to provide "a safer online environment for the LGBT community." While not gay himself, Small has "very close friends in the gay community" and understands the reliance that most everyone has on the Internet these days. FriendsYouKnow is an online arena for LGBT people to "communicate with each other and share their info." Make no mistake, though: "It's not a dating site," Small insisted.

While the website is currently in its beta-testing phase, it can still be accessed at a discounted subscription fee. The first phase of the website, once it has been fully released, will include "photo sharing, blogging, and a calendar" to be followed shortly by phase 2: a community center and a business center complete with information about topics including health, fitness, relationships, and finances. (Hannah Clay Wareham, The Advocate)

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