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Social network for rich people costs $9,000 to join

If Facebook is just too plebeian for your tastes, then whip out your credit card and head over to Netropolitan, a social network for the wealthy.

Netropolitan founder James Touchi-Peters poses with the network. Netropolitan

Facebook and Google+ have an inherent problem. Anybody can sign up for them. There are no safeguards, no credit checks and no proof of assets required.

If the thought of rubbing digital elbows with the unwashed rabble is too much to deal with, then it's time you joined a new kind of social network. Netropolitan is the social meeting place online reserved for people rich enough to join.

Not only do you have to be wealthy when you join Netropolitan, you have to stay wealthy to continue using it. The first-year fees break down into $6,000 to join, with an additional $3,000 fee that renews annually to allow you continued access.

There are some requirements for membership. You have to be at least 21, so you Richie Rich types won't qualify. You are asked to use your real name and main city of residence. All community posts must be in English. Members also must agree not to divulge the identities of other members outside of Netropolitan and not to take screenshots for display to the public. This helps it maintain the feel of being an exclusive secret club.

Netropolitan will not share how many members the service has, but it announced that it already had several hundred members at launch. When asked about interest from potential members, a representative told CNET there was so much traffic after launch that the site crashed and upgraded servers are still struggling to keep up with the views. Granted, a good portion of that traffic is most likely from curious bystanders wanting to know what a $9,000 social network looks like.

The social network is pretty secretive, but one screen shot of the interface reveals that is looks a bit like a super-stripped-down Google+ with a round profile photo and icons for activity, profile, notifications, messages, location, and following notifications. Status updates appear to work in a familiar Facebook-style way.

Interestingly enough, Netropolitan has its own page on Facebook, which is loaded down with snarky comments from users who have no intention of dropping $9,000 to join a social network. "How do I give you my money? I was hoping it'd be $3,000/day to make sure we only get the real 1%ers," writes Facebook user Travis Laughlin.

Perhaps the Facebook commenters are all riled up in part due to some of Netropolitan's arguably elitist taglines, which include "Connect with people within your social status, but outside your social circle," and "Netropolitan: The online country club for people with more money than time."

If it feels like Netropolitan is attempting to alienate the less-moneyed masses, you're right. It's an unapologetic luxury service and it doesn't care if the common people don't like it. It will leave the majority of social network users locked out, wondering what the Netropolitan elite is talking about in there. I'm just guessing, but I think it probably involves the words "Lamborghini," "1947 Cheval Blanc," and "prenuptial agreement."

Netropolitan marketing image
This marketing image shows Netropolitan's target audience. Netropolitan

(Via KRON 4)