I believe I'm hooked on nings. I like the simplicity of the layouts and different pages. I have a blog just for my students, but now I think I will set up a ning. It is a great way to create a network of students around academic topics. I searched for nings for ESL students and found a couple from around the world. Wouldn't it be great to learn with students from Australia or the Middle East! I signed up for a couple just to see what develops. There were not many just geared for ESL students. One summer goal is to set up a ning!
http://eflclassroom.ning.com/index.php , http://ncte2008.ning.com/group/englishlanguagelearnersesl
This link explains how educators can remove the ads from their ning- http://education.ning.com/page/page/show?id=1027485:Page:45750