CUB Enterprises launched the first phase of its niche social network. Nicknamed the “Facebook for Bears” by its beta testers, BearCubHouse.com is a social network targeted toward the gay bear community, a subset of the greater gay community.
“We have created a place where everyone can feel comfortable and make friends with other bears and bear admirers around the world,” said Ryan Fowler, co-founder of BCH.
“The majority of bear websites that are out there seem to be over-glorified personals with some very minor social functionality. They seem to use ‘social network’ as a buzzword versus what they actually are. When people think ‘social networking’ they think Facebook and MySpace. That’s more what we closely resemble,” said Christopher Clai, co-founder of BCH.
BCH was designed with many differences in mind in comparison to many existing bear-related websites. Its core focus is on bringing the community together and creating friendships. Though for those of legal age, the site does offer an adult side and features for hookups and dating.
BCH allows and encourages those under 18 to join who are exploring their sexuality, to feel more comfortable and meet like-minded people.
BCH also offers two levels of membership. It’s free membership provides users with a fully-featured profile, photo galleries, blog, chat, private messaging and group chats. For $59.99 a year (other payment options available), users can upgrade to a premium membership which includes unlimited audio/video chatting, file attachments, greater photo capacity, online whiteboard, placement top of search results, first access to new features and an expanding list of further features.
In the future, BCH will continue to expand as a central portal for the gay bear community which includes events and group functionality.
In addition, interest sections like cooking, technology, and comedy will soon follow.