iTalki is a language learning social network which comes with all the Web 2.0 sauce you’d expect to find this side of 2007. There are groups, a wiki, a place to share files and at the core of the system is a sophisticated search engine to help you find the best partner to help you learn the language of your dreams.
Once you’ve located a suitable ‘study buddy’ (oy!) you can set up a Facebook like relationship with them and start exchanging language skills. They’ll be wanting to learn your language and you’ll be wanting to learn theirs, see? Of course there are some folks on there who only seem to want to learn the language of love, know what we mean? Anyway, it’s all very nice, with photos, bios and lots and lots of happy chatty young things from around the world.
My personal view is that the social networks are going to have to offer some sort of specialisation if they want to grow and prosper, rather like LinkedIn for business networking, MySpace for music and this one for languages, and the ones that don’t – you listening Facebook? – are heading for a world of pain. But what do I know?
So if you’re wishing to parlez Italiano (sic) then head here and sign up. You might enjoy it, even if your learning experience is not as professional as it could be.
italki.com is a free language learning website where you can find everything you need to learn a language online. italki is applying Web 2.0 concepts, such as social networking, user-generated content, and crowdsourcing, to language learning. italki is now home to a global community of language learners representing over 90 langauges worldwide. italki was one of the first social networks focused on learning foreign languages online and continues to be an innovator in this space with features such as multimedia chat, socially-driven questions and answers, open-source file sharing, and collaborative knowledge-based wikis.