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Sunday, October 7, 2012

Social Networking

I've been very active on Twitter lately. More than I've been on Facebook. Now both of these are primary examples of our social networking sites, aren't they? We post status messages, we tell people what is on our mind, we tell everyone where we are. It has become a an integral part of our social life, or I should rather say, our life.

We may not have a penny in our pocket, but we have at least one active internet plan so that we can access our 'social networks' on the go. That poses a question. What is social network? Is it these networking sites? Do we actually value our social networks? Is everything limited to the internet now?

There are so many questions, but the answers lies somewhere in ourselves. Somewhere, I believe, we have become more disconnected than ever. Instead of simply networking, it has become a popularity contest. It's no more about connecting with out old friends or making new ones. Somewhere it is about statistics. Someone asked me about my friend count on one of the social networks. It was a weird question for me. What does it matter how many friends or followers I have? isn't it about me connecting with my old friends or connecting with some like minded person? 

That is not all. Look at the promotional material we have on our social networks. It has become a hell of way of advertising. And I understand that. Companies will look for revenue from any and everything. Isn't a business all about profit? But somewhere it has become more about business than social networking. Advertising is no longer limited to a footnote or banner. It has become more that this. 

Social Networking is good and social networking is bad. But no way it was ever supposed to be a popularity contest. It was never about how many friends you have. It is supposed to be about how you connect with the people you think are important to you. I just wish that we come back to that.