Changing social fabric
August 24, 2007
After a bunch of blogs related to photography, I thought I'd try my hand at something else. And as the new assignment is “Communication”, what better subject?
In the past, I must admit I have been rather dismissive of these, except for the professional network sites such as LinkedIn. LinkedIn has proved itself to be extremely useful... basically I've more or less posted my CV there and on occasion have had people get in touch with me to see if I would be interested in a career opportunity. But it has also been useful in getting in touch with people who have experience working in a technical area that I might be having an issue with in my work.
At various points, I have been on an on-line social network of some sort or the other... but I quickly gave up on them as they just seemed after a while to be a vehicle for predators looking for a quickie, or hoping to find a soul mate.
On the other hand sites like MySpace have helped artists such as Lily Allen and Arctic Monkeys launch their musical careers. And who knows which blogger is going to end up creating the new Harry Potter?
But what about trust and privacy? Is there at all a boundary that says that a person has gone from being an friend on-line friend to just a friend? Is there even a need for one? What can one tell someone one has never actually met? In the “real world”, there are circumstances when one can judge a person’s importance to us or the strength and depth of a relationship, but is it possible to do so on-screen?
Or maybe none of this should be taken all that seriously, maybe it’s just a way to pass the time, or even a way that is faster and easier to keep in touch with old friends and family. But it is a behavior that is becoming more and more prevalent in our world, and I wonder what it will say about us in 10 years time.
I’m curious to know what different reasons there are for the upsurge in this type of socializing and if people actually get some sense of satisfaction from “virtual” socializing?