Rich and looking for an online destination to socialize privately with other rich people? The Netropolitan Club might be the answer. It's a new fee-based social network for "people with more money than time," according to the site.
The cost is $9,000 to join and $3,000 annually thereafter. Members get a site that promises to never sell their data and to remain ad-free. Plus, the added bonus of no interference from "the 99 percent that clutter up the rest of social media," said author Mark Ellwood.
Ellwood, who appears on CNBC's "The Filthy Rich Guide," can't understand why anyone would pay for social media when so many already established sites cost nothing. "What I don't understand is why you wouldn't just do like the rest of us and purge your friend's list?" he said.
A Virtual Country Club for the Rich
But Netropolitan founder James Touchi-Peters says people will pay for the site for the same reason they'd join a real world country club.
"Technically the site isn't different than a standard social network site," said Touchi-Peters. "The difference is you get privacy and access to a global network of people who share a similar lifestyle with you."
A composer and former conductor of the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra, Touchi-Peters would commiserate with his accomplished friends about not fitting in with the general public. So he created the site, which is billed as "The World's Most Exclusive Online Community." "It's lonely at the top and you have to be at the top to understand how true that is," said Touchi-Peters.
Rich Chatter Is … Quite Ordinary?
The big advantage of paying for Netropolitan is that like-minded people can network globally to brainstorm ideas, Touchi-Peters said. But so far he hasn't read anything extraordinary.
"I haven't seen any great political debates yet, instead the conversations seem amazingly ordinary," he said. "People are posting pictures of their kids and vacations."
The site launched in mid-September. He wouldn't give exact figures but said Netropolitan's community is small and growing with more people joining from outside the United States. As for the price tag, he's actually been criticized for it being too low. But since members can't have dinner and go golfing together like at a real club, he thinks it's fair.
Privacy from the Outside
Users can post status updates but unlike other social media sites they're required to display their real names, truthfully tell where they live, and any background information they provide must be real. No solicitations of any kind are allowed.
Upon joining, all members are connected and can access the names of everyone on the site. A main newsfeed visible to anyone scrolls with the activity of all members.
"Most people join to meet and connect with others, so asking them to mutually accept relationships (friend requests) is pointless" Touchi-Peters said.
But don't worry, if photo after photo of that rich guy's mega yacht becomes too much to bear, the same blocking option found on most free sites exists here too.
This article originally appeared in CNBC: