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Social networking on the web


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Dude you totally added me as a friend on myspace (or maybe facebook)! This is my pissed-off-you-are-such-a-hypocrite face.

 

I started facebook until it was revealed here that it's real purpose was to monitor your buying habits. I never went back.

You should be thrilled to be in my address book, young man. It's an honor!

 

 

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Of course I was thrilled but now I'm crushed. Or maybe not. I don't know. It's too hot! Help!

 

(Seriously, in reply to your question, I think I signed up at all of those sites at one point or another. I suppose there's a chance they might someday be of use, but I really don't understand them.)

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I don't get the whole thing. I mean, I'm "LinkedIn" to a few people, including some here, but I don't understand how that stuff works. The people I know seem to use them regularly -- every month I get a bulletin with how many questions so-and-so answered, and who is now linked to somebody-else. But I still have no idea. And nobody has ever asked me :( for help.

 

The wife of a cousin (both of whom I like, but I hardly ever see them) "sent me an invitation" to which I replied via regular e-mail that I don't do that stuff. She then replied via e-mail saying she "just hit a button" and it sent out all these things. Which I find even scarier -- if they can read my whole address book, then I DEFINITELY don't want to have anything to do with them (the sites, that is, not my cousins).

 

And another friend broke up with her boyfriend after she saw compromising stuff about him online. Sounds bad to me.

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I prefer facebook to linkedin. Almost everyone I'm linkedin to moved over to facebook anyway. Facebook can be odd and amusing because it combines social and professional interests more than Linkedin does. I've found things out about people I've known for years through things they posted on FB but never told me in real life (probably because I never asked).

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RG, I think you would think Facebook is a waste of time.

 

You'll get all these people you've never heard of, asking to be his friend, and to what purpose? It's good for me, because I'm social in that way, and like sending virtual flowers and Flair to my daughter and friends who are geared that way. But I think you'd think it was just frivilous, and that it would drive you crazy if someone sent a Virtual Angel or a Virtual Cocktail to you.

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A lot of writers, journalists and UN workers I know are on facebook. It also makes it easier for me to network with friends of friends. I share information through it (posts, press releases, etc..), I've gotten a couple of writing assignments, I met someone who is stationed in a very remote part of North Africa (turns out he and I have mutual colleague and he gave me a lot of detailed information about a project I was a part of)...

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I just cannot imagine that Steve Sando needs to be on Facebook, personally. Someone should set up a fan group for him, in which case, he can score bean sales. He doesn't need all the impersonal personal attention: he's got his own way of doing business, with far much more charm from the classic business model, than Flair or Angels.

 

I really cannot imagine Steve Sando responding with anything but bewilderment at people sending him bullshit tokens that are worth nothing in the Great Carnival of Life.

 

Can you? (Facebook peeps?)

 

Maybe Sando can set up "Rancho Gordo" as a company, or a page, or a group. But not as an individual.

 

Just my two pesos.

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I don't know what Sando wants since I'm not him. Just sharing my experiences with it. I rarely get sent apps by people in my network, it's not their thing or mine. What's the latest number now, 100 million people on facebook? There's a pretty big range of reasons people have for using facebook. For the most part I prefer it to anonymous forums. I've never been sent "gifts" via PM over there nor have I been "stalked" since it's a more transparent format. Which reminds me, I'm outta here.

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I spent a short morning and my impressions:

 

Positives

You find people you lost contact with and it's great.

The interface is nice, as opposed to myspace which starts out ugly and the user can make it worse

Forums are fun but it's good to see your "live" friends in one handy place

It works with the Blackberry and there's a special app that is very cool

My high school, the IACP, and Mina fans are all there, well represented.

Sometimes you don't want to engage in an email exchange but you want to keep in touch. "The Wall" is great for that. And it's easy to scan.

 

Negatives

How do you turn down a request for friendship? I see you can ignore it but that whole thing is kind of rough.

In one morning, I found 47 friends, only 2 of them bogus. Well, three, but I'm sure Eydie Gorme would be my friend if she got to know me. But you learn about people who are most active, not your most beloved friends. I wish there were family, friends and acquaintances categories.

Your actions are read by your friends list. Because of the season, I'm reading a lot of political things and while I'm not shy about my thoughts, I don't want to have my friends who live with their heads up their ass constantly having to look at my rantings about politics. Just out of courtesy.

 

All in all it's very engaging and handy and I can see the more people on your friends list, the better this would be. Best of all is getting an email that says something like: Barbra Streisand has confirmed you as a friend. I'm sorry, but money can't buy that kind of joy!

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Ignore is fine. I don't see a problem with it. I'm not that picky and certainly don't want to alienate people I know. However I decided early on that I don't want everyone I know in real life to know what I do professionally. Even though I socialize with them for various reasons I rarely talk about my work with them and I want to keep it that way.

 

As for politics, mine are very important to me. I post political links sometimes and so do quite a few others in my network. A lot of them work in some political sphere so it makes sense that they are interested in sharing their views.

 

I deleted 4 people because I found out that they ware voting for Michael Palin and John Cleese. I did feel a bit uneasy when I found out that a celebrity chef was evangelical and liked to post proverbs. I'm not religious, but consider myself to be tolerant and believe these things should not be imposed on other people.

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