I was a little surprised to see the Orkut is the number 2 site in India, maybe it will become the number 1 site like it has in Brazil.
The interesting thing about india is it has 350 million english speaking users, when I launched my site in 2003 it had explosive growth in India, the only problem was that In a short time I signed up over 60,000 men and 1500 women, an extremely large percentage of messages from the indian men where about sex… I ended up blocking the entire country because you just can’t create a business out of that for many reasons, not the least of which is the ratio of men to women. Also they would have ended up destroying the entire site. Dating is a very local thing and hard to export/impose a western culture. In India the matrimonial sites are seeing insane growth as a result Jeevansathi.com IPO’ed today and Shaadi.com plans to IPO soon as well.
My experience is that for Indians social networking/dating is treated as a form of porn.
It is no surprise that not many social networks there and no dating sites dare venture there.
Exporting social networking/dating other other countries results in culture clashes, I wonder what it is about Orkut that makes it so successful in places where others fail.