AlphaStripe offers veterans, military personnel their own place online
AlphaStripe, a global, online networking platform for veterans, military service members and military families, has launched its non-beta site making it easier for users to connect, network and tell their own stories. Now users can create an AlphaStripe account by simply signing in with Facebook and linking both social networks.
The AlphaStripe platform is designed so people can share their military experiences and conflict zone stories in video, photo, and journal formats. The startup previously beta tested a variety of tools earlier in the summer before redesigning the website to optimize the user experience.
The main areas of AlphaStripe are open to the public with secure areas available to service members to allow private documentation of stories and the ability to reconnect with old comrades. The startup has developed an incredibly comprehensive military database for the US armed forces dating back to World War II, allowing veterans to connect based on their service history.
“We listened to the users from our test site and are now launching an improved platform to meet their needs” said Eli Chmouni, co-founder and CEO of AlphaStripe. “We have improved the story telling functionality with the ability to share multiple photos and videos with every post.”
Another feature that can help users to reconnect is the ‘barrack’ option, relating to where the person trained or was based during their service. The ‘barrack’ has been implemented so veterans can group their connections based on their true relationships. Stories are then shared within a ‘barrack’ allowing better control of privacy and security. For instance, some stories might be too graphic for a military member’s family but acceptable for his unit, thus a separate barrack for each group of connections allows the user to control the access to these stories. AlphaStripe now offers that capability with a level of privacy that many other social networks don’t.
“I spent eight years in the military and there are so many stories to share,” said Jason Brown, military officer and co-founder of AlphaStripe. “Some are too personal to share with the world at large and some are so funny that they must be shared with the world. AlphaStripe was created to provide a private and public space to share the stories of conflict that so many soldiers want to tell.”
Brown served for 8 years in the U.S. Army. He was in the 4/25th Airborne Infantry out of Fort Richardson Alaska for the first portion of his service. During this time he deployed to Iraq for a 15 month rotation cut short by 4 months after sustaining a gunshot wound during a fire fight. After his recovery and rehab, he then volunteered for the 75th Ranger Regiment. With Regiment, he deployed once more to Iraq then twice to Afghanistan.
“I loved every second of Ranger Battalion,” said Brown. He is currently completing his computer science degree at Arizona State University.
“The team at AlphaStripe know that the history books don’t include most veteran’s personal mark on history. On Veterans Day weekend we need to remember those who made an impact, who have made a sacrifice,” added Brown.
AlphaStripe is dedicated to keeping the veteran community strong, to informing the service members in transition, and to giving back to the community. ‘Telling stories’ is at the core of the product. This will be underpinned with strong social and commercial elements that will allow people to connect and do business as the platform develops. The audience is huge, with more than 92 million current military members (active + reserve) across 173 countries. Based on recent US Census figures, the number of military veterans in the United States in 2010 was 21.8 million.
AlphaStripe is currently one of twenty student-led startup companies in the ASU Edson Student program based in SkySong in Scottsdale Arizona.