Why is it that Tinseltown types always have such a tin ear when it comes to the Web? Former studio execs Robert Tercek and Matt Edelman hope to spread their own sickly-sweet take on self-help across the Net with new site PeopleJam. The pair have the Web 2.0 patter down: social networking, video syndication, and so on. And they also have a large stable of supposedly notable self-help gurus, as well as YouTube star Judson Laipply, famous for "The Evolution of Dance." But before they work with any of those assets, we'd say Tercek and Edelman need to face reality and self-help themselves. Even the Web 2.0 Name Generator wouldn't spit out such an inappropriate malapropism. When I hear "PeopleJam," I think Soylent Green. Delicious, gelatinous, sweetened preserve of human flesh.
In fact, I bet PeopleJam spread over Soylent Green makes a tasty snack. I can't even think of the intended meaning if I try. The sweaty residue left when you shove your way out of a crowd of filthy concertgoers? Perhaps Edelman, who looks a bit like John Waters, secretly delights in the unpleasant connotations of the name. But I don't see how it's going to win him users. How is a site named PeopleJam going to attract its intended audience of claustrophobes, agoraphobes, people with body and eating issues — when anyone with the slightest shred of self-respect will find themselves unable to type the name into their browser's location window.