Skype Journal Test

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Language Skypenomics: Myngle is a market for students and teachers

Myngle logoMyngle picked up €800k in first round funding last week. Language teachers offer their services through the site, students shop for teachers, they pay through Myngle, study through Skype. Co-founders include alumni of eBay, Berlitz, Razorfish and Proctor & Gamble.

Teachers set market prices, publish hours when they are available (Myngle takes care of time zone arithmetic). Students shop and sign up for lessons.

Myngle augments instruction. Teachers can use a whiteboard during a class. They can record podcasts for students to study before or after class. And they can design quizzes to warm up or reinforce a lesson.

Teachers can share curriculum and best practices within Myngle. A touch of community.

Language schools can also sign up, selling their service through Myngle. Sales and fees are administered through the school instead of the instructor.

It's not free. "Myngle charges 18% commission per lesson when you start teaching. This fee is charged for use of Myngle's platform and services, PayPal fees and includes VAT." Payment is immediate. Contrast this with Skype's Prime terms (30% commission, 15% VAT, 120 days to get paid, $30/hour minimum bill rate).

So, just to be clear, Myngle and the instructors are making the market, use free Skype to deliver service, and pay via PayPal. Skype is free.

Language and culture are the ultimate barriers to online communication. Solving those problems is a massive opportunity, with many competitors.

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