Why Is Photo Startup DailyBooth So Hot?

Daily BoothUpdated: When it comes to burgeoning social media sites, DailyBooth, a Y Combinator startup, has captured the attention of users and VCs alike. The startup’s web site prompts people to take photos of themselves and post them on a message board with a note. DailyBooth’s fast-growing audience, which mushroomed to 6.5 million unique visitors last month, has helped the site grab investors’ attention — and we hear from our Silicon Valley sources that many VC firms are clamoring to fund the upstart. (Update: DailyBooth cites Google Analytics as the source of the 6.5 million uniques figure; Quantcast and Compete put the site’s audience at a much lower number.)

The site’s visitors nearly doubled in August from the month before, according to DailyBooth founder Jon Wheatley. But when it came to talking about which venture firms the startup has been in talks with, Wheatley was tight-lipped. “As much as I would love to, I can’t comment on this just yet,” he wrote in an email. While Wheatley’s response is vague, the investor attention that DailyBooth is receiving may hint at a funding announcement soon.

Coined as a “Twitter for pictures,” DailyBooth is similar to the micro-messaging site in that users can choose to follow others, and it has adopted the “@” reply function. Twitter is a prime driver of traffic to DailyBooth, according to Wheatley, as users can tweet links to their photos on the DailyBooth site.

With millions of people — including web personality iJustine — embracing DailyBooth, it’s clear that a social site focused around photos can rope in users. When asked why users keep coming back to the site day after day, Wheatley wrote that “(p)eople find pictures a much more engaging medium than just text. People love looking at their dashboard and actually seeing what their friends are up to.” Indeed, yesterday we wrote that photos are a sticky feature on social networks like Facebook, which has caused people to spend less time on sites focused around email and instant messaging. In fact, Facebook stores over 80 billion photos on its serve — enough pictures to wrap around the Earth seven times. But while Facebook has gotten in trouble with users regarding the privacy of their photos, people on DailyBooth don’t mind sharing photos of themselves (though the site does offer privacy settings for those who want to keep their profiles more protected.)

Wheatley said the startup will soon let people post links to their DailyBooth photos on other social networks. But while we wait for that feature, we want to know which venture firm will snap up equity in the company.

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