The demise of Eduspaces is a real pity as it seemed to be a community with a decent niche and a well established user-base. That said it is a tough thing to make money from and not everyone is Facebook and the team at Curverider have mortgages to pay like most of us I’m sure.
It seems to me though that this could open up an opportunity for services like this one at JISC Involve but also Edublogs down under (which inspired this service) but maybe more significantly the JANET Collaboration Service that while still in beta is pretty well established by now. An offer of migration support would be a nice Christmas present for alot of users over at Eduspaces.
A hot topic on the Eduspaces forum has been the idea of a ‘Eduspaces Foundation’ to take forward the network and keep it running for its users. I think its a nice idea but I’m not sure the comments about the cost of maintenance, hosting and management are very realistic. I think it’ll be tougher than people realise.
From a personal point of view I never really liked Elgg and found it a bit clumsy compared to Ning or even People Aggregator and while I appreciated its open-source status and the passionate community around it I could never be convinced it could compete with these other services – its only a personal opinion though and I know many people speak highly of it.
Anyway, like I said – its a real pity and I think the timing is a real shame as well – I can imagine many people will be forced to spand more times on their laptops this Christmas than perhaps they’d hoped.