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Am I Becoming Anti Social?

One of the best Personal networking types I know, James Body of client Truphone pinged me yesterday on Skype about a reading something on pal and client Alec Saunders' personal blog about getting an email about Spock, a network I am deeming as Anti-Social and did so the first time I received an invite. Alec received the same reply a few other friends who I know, really know better, have received from me and posted it anonymously on his blog. Body of course had heard or read my views on just how many networks we really need and how many networks we need not join and why from me firsthand on a recent London visit.

Unless every other way we have to communicate has broken, I am not joining another Social Network. Sorry. All these do is generate more and more email.

Now Irwin Lazar of Nemeretes is singing the same tune I am making, me wonder if I should have blogged about what I already have said on Ken Radio's World Technology Roundup, made reference about at Mobile Monday Madrid or shared with trusted friends in private e-mail. It seems Alec's second post on the subject confirms my gut reaction.

Do we really need more networks, or do we need to get more from the ones we already have? As Plaxo looks more like LinkedIn, and as LinkedIn tries to keep up with the Facebooks, the whole idea of social networks, to get closer, not farther from people has really started to wane, and we may be seeing something more necessary the OPT ME OUT NOW option that would prevent the impersonal "join my network" emails that are doing nothing but creating the equal of Internet "in box pollution." In affect the value of the "network" which is really at the core of all these is being burned at the altar by a "get big fast" VC fueled management style these networks all have in common.

Here's a hint. It's not how many, it's who..that matters. Just like blogs. You don't have to have the biggest audience. It's whom is in the audience that does, questioning once again if Size Matters.

Exercising your own network, and networking not adding is the muscle these tools bring to establishing relationships. But if all the Social Networks are going to become, then we really will have nothing but a growing list of White Pages competitors......and Yellow Pages wannabees.

Comments

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Andrey Golub

Hey, great thought Andy- 'Do we really need more networks, or do we need to get more from the ones we already have?'

I think most of us do not need more new Networks- there is Facebook to poke the friend :)s, there is MySpace to content-poke another friends :), there is LinkedIn to stay up-to-dated about the lives of our business friends and connections. And there are some other useful Netowowks of course (I mostly user LinkedIn and Facebook).

But Spock is what? is it really a Social Network? not exactly!
I think it's mission is much more close to the META Network. Look- it's a Search Engine so it works with meta-data, plus it's a People Search Engine so this META- data is about People, so why that META-data couldn't be created or at least corrected by the same people (a Web 2.0 element, from where you conclude Spock is 'another social network')?
Of course if one doesn't go to the Spock web site to read it's a People SEARCH ENGINE, if has all reasons to say- "I have no time for another Social Network".
So probably Spock should explain better in the invitations generated, what's the mission of Spock, or at least what is Spock! :) I remember my earlier invitation- "Hi new Spocker", and I agree it looks like 'just another SN'. Now it's improved from what do I know. however

I think for Spock to have a SN element is a very good idea- this gives to everyone of us to take under control what the others will read about us when they search for smth (or us directly) and navigate to our Spock profile.

So I think your "or do we need to get more from the ones we already have?' it's exactly what the most of us need- still get the most from the networks we already take part of. but then- to see a common picture, what there was missing? I think exactly a META network, that puts together our "pages" (Web info about us), our SN (Web 2.0 info about us). + Spock could do it even better- they added the Spock community to the heart of their search motor...

I personally think it's the best combination to generate the most complete search results about People: take Web + add SN + ask for Community Contribution. And so yes, that last part of Spock, the 'community contribution', works like a SN- it's needed to join in order to contribute.

I think it's amazing idea, guys :)

See you on Spock?
Andrey Golub- a Spock Evangelist and Blogger
http://www.spock.com/Andrey-Golub

ravenii

Andy I think you are the last person to be anti social, but I do understand the position.

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