Zorpia was created in Hong Kong in 2003 as a networking site and has grown to a community of over 5 million members since then. It's most popular in India, Sudan and Quatar, but has users from all over the world.
Zorpia is a networking site designed for Asian and Middle Eastern users mostly, but the main language used is English, and there are no content restrictions. The site is supposed to help people meet, chat, share photos and discuss things on forums, much like any other social networking site, but doesn't really have any other features that could make it tempting.
Zorpia is a chat and dating site, so it should provide useful tools to help people get together. Unfortunately, there aren’t many. There’s one little search box on the main page, but the more detailed search engine is hidden and can be accessed only in surprising an unintuitive ways, like checking who ‘waved’, going to his profile and then the ‘get dating’ engine. Another way to get to a different search site is by choosing the category ‘Zorpians’ in the search box, then getting the search menu with the usual content (age, location, orientation, marital status, interests). It would be much easier if the links to detailed search were somewhere on display.
There are 3 kinds of messages – usual ‘email’ kind, instant and ‘guestbook comments’ with a strange and confusing thread system. There’s also a ‘wave’ function, similar to facebook poke, you can see who waved, and wave back or access their profile. Conversation on Meebo IM is real time, but the notification about ther messages appears after you refresh the page, which is rather frustrating.
There’s no message archive, so you can’t check whom you talked with and what about, and this is essential if you want to continue a conversation or avoid repeating the same things. It would be more possible to remember the users we talked to if their profile pics were clearly displayed in the IM window (they aren’t) or of the username weren’t obscured by a lengthy address (USERNAME@zorpia.com/MeeboCIM7aec66c). All of this makes the conversation part of the site really confusing and with a huge number of random messages from strangers one can easily get lost. This could certainly be done better, and is better on numerous sites. Of course, one can avoid getting messages from strangers by adjusting the profile and chat privacy. There's also a way of verifying the profile picture, which might be useful on a site plagued with hoax accounts - users take a photo of themselves holding a piece of paper with their Zorpia ID written on it.
Apart from chatting, users can post statuses, pictures or links and mark them with tags, so they will show up in a news feed of users who follow those tags. This part of the site is a bit like Tumblr and works quite well.
Using the site is possible, but not really enjoyable. Responding or writing messages at strangers is easy, but finding a good conversation partner is a huge challenge.
This is yet another disappointing aspect of this site. Advertisement boxes appear and cover up the content, so does the IM box. There is a standard menu at the top with links to messages, waves, friends and visitors, and a search box, but many parts of the site are hidden and accessible by accident. Zorpia looks dated and unintuitive.
I know that there are people who love Zorpia and have fun there, but for me the experience of testing it was rather frustrating. I expected a possibility of finding people i could have an interesting conversation with, but the site's features didn't really allow conscious search and i was flooded by random messages from strangers. I like to keep track of my conversations to see which topics i have discussed with which user, but it was impossible. The site is not terrible, but there are many things that could be improved, to make it a more user friendly place.