Lately I have spent quite a bit of time on Facebook. I’ve even noticed that the social networking site is my 16 year old son’s favorite. At least once per day one of my friends challenges me to test my movie preferences against their’s. You can set your current situation (up to the minute.) Interesting. I even see what changes my friends have made (including gaining new friends.) But, I can’t keep up with this. There is just too much to keep up with.
Of course, the most popular of these types of sites is MySpace. Many of my friends in the Philippines use Friendster. The “skins” that folks use there can be really cute or really weird (or creepy.) Just like with Facebook, I keep my Friendster page plain.
I’m really interested though not only in sites that make money but also in ones that deliver straight forward productivity. In the business world, Linkedin is huge. You create your profile and then find others that you either know or have worked with. You then “link” with those people and show these people as “connections”. The site plays on the “six degrees of separation” bit. It is interesting to see people that are only 1 or 2 steps away. Linkedin is free. But, they sell premium accounts allowing you to bypass steps to meeting people. You can also post jobs and perform market research. Linkedin’s new tagline is “Relationships Matter”. I agree.
But, where does all of this end? My 16 year old is happier using IM and Facebook than he is watching TV. I guess this is good. He’s not been in jail, doesn’t do drugs (although he can play most Hedrix songs on his guitars) and seems happy. Hmmmm, social networking?! Let’s see, instead of watching TV, I’m blogging. And then those posts appear in the new remade Plaxo (which is more of a social networking site for adults.) And I’m not on drugs either. COOL.