This is a blog post that I started in around 2008. I’m going to post it, and then hopefully follow up with my more current thoughts on Social networking.
Social Networking. That’s one of those buzzwords that I almost cringe when I hear.
There is a gap in Social Networking, and it’s right in the middle. When you fall through it, you start to think of Facebook as an end point instead of a starting point. You think Twitter is actually a place to hang out with your friends. You think that Myspace… well, unless you think that Myspace is garbage, you’re probably not thinking, and we’ll leave that one alone.
The gap in Social Networking is where all the people who don’t get it are hanging out. They’re the people who keep sending you Farmville invitations and wonder why you’re not jumping all over their need for irrigation. For them, the games are a way of hanging out with their friends online. A need to connect like this will prompt people to set their status to something like “nothing to report” which makes everyone else wonder why you’d actually make a status update like that. Why continue updating, when you’ve admitted that there’s nothing left to say?
I’m not going to wax poetic on the transcendental need to shout out that we exist, or by the ennui of hanging out in a virtual world. But what is Social Networking actually for? It’s actually pretty simple: Social Networking, in most cases, is just a synonym for Marketing. For most intents and purposes, Social Networking is just a tool to shout out I Exist! But it’s no substitute for getting outside and actually talking to your friends (he says in his blog post).
I’m not saying that social sites are bad. I’ll admit that I’m not a big fan of TheMyFace, but I use Twitter pretty extensively. So I’m a fan of social networking, but I also hate social networking.
And that’s about when I lost steam with my rant on Social Networking. You can still find me on TheMyFace if you look hard, but it’s better to find me on the TweetMaker: @andrewphoenix