Saturday, February 02, 2008

Social Network Fatigue or Growing Pains?

I came across an article from The Register that suggests (with the numbers) that interest in social networking is waning.

On Facebook [you] join, accumulate dozens of semi-friends, spy on a few exes for a bit, play some Scrabulous, get bored, then get on with your life, occasionally dropping in to respond to a message or see some photos that have been posted. Similarly, once the novelty of MySpace wears off, most people only stop by to check out bands or watch videos.

I blogged about this a couple months ago in a post that quoted my 15 yr old daughter "Facebook used to be cool, and now it's all, like, junkie". We both felt our interest in Facebook was waning for various reasons.

I'm not at all convinced the people don't want to connect anymore, nor that this isn't a potentially important aspect of ways we learn in a connected world, but social networking tools may be maturing--possibly a good sign for education.

I don't understand it all yet, but this short article from Google on the Social Graphing API suggests to me a better way to approach social networking. Connecting people around similar interests, artifacts, projects or profiles, regardless of the particlar software/tools they use or who is in whose contact list. This is something I'll be following and wanting to learn more about.
-Joel G.

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