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Livemocha is a social network service where users can learn languages through audio-visual lessons, peer tutoring tools and support systems. Users can aid others in learning the languages that they are proficient in while learning other languages themselves. This is achieved through peer reviewing of submissions, live text and audio conversations, and other learning systems.



Livemocha is a Seattle-based start-up company that is attempting to redefine the way in which people learn languages through the use of an online community of native speakers of different languages (language exchange), interactive online lessons and Web 2.0 technologies. The system aims to create a level of language immersion that is not possible with the use of traditional language learning tools such as books and compact discs.

Livemocha is the first major language learning tool based on social networking technologies. Lessons are provided for thirty languages; American English, Spanish (Castellano), French, Hindi, German, Italian, Japanese, Brazilian Portuguese, Russian, Mandarin, Icelandic, Korean, Arabic, Turkish, Polish, Ukrainian, European Portuguese, Greek, Dutch, Estonian, Romanian, Persian, Bulgarian, Finnish, Hungarian, Czech, Urdu, Catalan, Swedish, Hebrew and Esperanto, which is the most recent addition. Other tools such as translators are provided for a variety of other languages. It is possible to vote for new languages to be introduced, and more will become available over time. Languages that should be introduced shortly are: Filipino, Thai, Vietnamese, Norwegian, Irish and Lithuanian[citation needed].

Several national newspapers (including The New York Times)[1] have included articles about Livemocha's language tools since its early development stages.[2][3][4]

According to John Cook's Venture Blog, Livemocha was easily Seattle's biggest moving startup company in Autumn 2007.[5] According to CEO Shirish Nadkarni, Livemocha has over 2,000,000 users from over 200 countries as of March 2008. [6]


Livemocha is no longer a beta, and is official as of 2009. The standard lessons are free which focus on courses ranging from 30–50 hours, though they also offer "premium" lessons for a fee, starting at $12 USD. [7]

Lessons for four additional languages were supplied in April 2008 and a further two were added by May 2008.[6] An additional one Korean, was added in February 2009. Arabic was added March 2009. With Ukrainian, Turkish, Polish, and European Portuguese added in April 2009, Greek, Dutch and Estonian were added in May 2009, and Romanian was added in June 2009. As well as Persian being added in July, making 22 languages available for study.

Also offers three paid courses: Premium American English 101, Premium Spanish 101 and Premium French 101. Where members pay a small fee for group tutoring sessions and grammar guides plus other material not available with the free content. They also offer 6 "Travel Crash Courses" for American English, French, German, Italian, Spanish and Mandarin Chinese. These crash courses offer the members useful phrases needed for vacation in foreign countries, plus MP3 downloads and other content is also included in the crash courses. Other plans include partnerships with language institutes, certifications and online classroom instruction.[6]


In January 2008, Livemocha announced that it had secured $6 million in funding from a venture capital firm.[8]


  1. "Learning From a Native Speaker, Without Leaving Home", ANNE EISENBERG, The New York Times, , February 17, 2008.
  2. "Not lost in translation: Livemocha blends language instruction with social networking, picks up $6M Series A", The, Mary Kathleen Flynn, January 24, 2008. Accessed 18 April 2008.
  3. "The social network where you can't understand anyone: Livemocha", Webware (Cnet), Rafe Needleman, September 24, 2007. Accessed 18 April 2008.
  4. Learning Languages in Context: Startup Live Mocha leverages social networking to teach foreign languages, Technology Review, Erica Naone, October 5 2007. Accessed 18 April 2008.
  5. "Top Seattle startups: Intelius, Zillow, iLike, etc.", John Cook's Venture Blog. Accessed 18 April 2008.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 "Livemocha eyes one million users this year", Pratima Harigunani, CIOL Network, , April 01 2008
  8. "Livemocha Secures $6 Million in Venture Capital Series A Funding Led by Maveron: Funding to Accelerate Popular Language Learning Site’s Functionality and Growth",, January 15, 2008. Accessed 18 April 2008.

See also

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