Sunday, November 9, 2008

Social Networking

Compared to most of my friends, I am in the advanced techno-ability category because I’ve mastered simple word processing tricks, am using Picasa for storing and sending photos, blogging, and making calls via Skype. I did teach online (an herbal medicine class when the AOL campus was open in the late 1990s) and have been a student at ed2go. I was even the Sleep Wizard, and got paid to maintain a sleep resource web area and write an every other week enewsletter, when Wz.com was trying to beat out about.com.

But I know the reality...I am lagging behind. I knew it when I came upon this “Stay in Touch” request at a blog I was reading:

“Email me at- xxxxx(at)yyyyy(dot)com
Friend me on StumbleUpon, Digg and Reddit
Find me on Facebook
Follow me on Twitter
Connect with me on LinkedIn
See my photos on Flickr
Comment on my blogs
Contact me through my website: xxxxyyyy.com

I was initially amused when I read this woman's list – me and most of my friend’s remember when we only had to remember a friend's phone number, landline only. What are all silly-named online links? Well, they are Social Networking Sites.

Social networking is the next step in online connections -- I read on one blog that top social networking sites had overtaken Google in popularity, so this is a major phenomenon -- and I’m not sure if I want to spend the time or have the inclination to learn all about it and then keep up with it all. Who do I want to network with anyway?

Yet now may be the time for me to take the leap. I’ve just received my second invitation to join Facebook (the most popular English language social networking site).

For background, I gathered this info from a techno bog:

The definition of a social network site (SNS):
it allows a person to make a profile, articulate a list of other people and "view and traverse their list of connections and those made by others within the system".

There are 3 types of social networking sites:
Socialising SNS (recreational, for social communication) e.g. MySpace, Twitter
Networking SNS (for non-social interpersonal communication) e.g. LinkedIn (and Ning?)
(Social) Navigation SNSs - social network features to help users find information or resources (e.g. Youtube, CiteULike, connotea).

What do you think about all this? Thoughts, feelings, experiences?

I want to hear from you -- so Stay In Touch. But currently my version includes only at this blog and email (BHpurple (sign for at) aol (dot) com – written out to discourage spammers).

6 comments:

zachslist said...

glad you dreamers are having a dreamy year

started playing around with facebook (also a bit with twitter) and got 'into it' today

don't know how it's going to work out but the immediate advantage seems to be immediate notification of what one's friends and family are doing and interchanging photos, etc.

see ya and love
zach, etc.

Barbara said...

I like zachslist and also receiving your photos by email -- but I'll probably try facebook with you too.

turbochargeman said...

Nice post. Seeing as that there are now so many social networks catering to such a wide range of niches, my biggest problem is finding ones relevant to me and related to my specific interests or product niches. Google seems to be inefficient and returns alot of irrelevant results. A cool resource that I use is this search engine designed specifically to find social networking sites.

Barbara said...

Thanks for your response. I think you have narrowed down what you might be looking for in a SNS -- as for me, I think I ony know what I don't want (gossip-type stuff) and I find that email and blogs keep me connected to many people and the projects I'm interested in. I may try it/Facebook out of curiousity!

Heather said...

I was very hesitant to join a network, but gave in and joined Facebook. It's a nice way to keep in touch with friends that live far away. It also serves to get you back in touch with people you have long lost touch with (some you want to "see", others, not so much). I have to admit, I am a total addict at this point, and love to read "status updates" that friends post.

Have enjoyed reading your blog... Are you planning to head south of the border?

Barbara said...

Heather...as my daughter pointed out, I'm not sure that any of my long lost friends are on facebook. And I didn't want to add another online activity that might get me lost in time (addicted, as you mentioned).

As for travels...we will continue south but almost positive we won't be crossing the border with the van. We have a number of places to visit in southern CA before we move east!