We all still remember Mahalo right? That human-powered search engine backed Jason Calcanis as SEO has just rolled a Question & Answer service. Perhaps realizing that similar services offered by both Google and Yaho didn’t make it big, Mahalo has came up with some innovative features ot its Q&A service – avatar and currency.
Mahalo’s Q&A service allows users to either use the pre-set Mahalo Avatars or use their own pictures instead. Users can use preloaded avatars or upload a photo of themselves instead. This avatar feature somehow puts some credibility to those who answer users’ questions.
As for the currency feature, Mahalo is putting a premium on the best answers for specific questions raised on the Mahalo site. Users or those who post questions may give “tip” depending on the reliability and accuracy of the answers they get. Once a Mahalo member has earned $40, they can ask to be paid through PayPal. In transmitting payments, the user gets $.75 per dollar tip earned. The remaining $.25 goes to Mahalo’s account.
Garnering more points also has an effect on a user’s reputation. A member can earn as much points as he/she can get. And the more points they generate the higher their “expert” statuses become.
Interestingly, both Yahoo and Google’s Q&A service didn’t quite generate too much hype and noise, until both Yahoo and Google decided to cancel out the service totally.
Could Mahalo Q&A service attract users? It would really depend on how satisfied users will be once they posted their questions and starts receiving comments.
But the idea is cool, if we may say so.