Sunday, August 05, 2007

Should I Social Network?

Social Networking...what is it exactly?
If you google the term, you will find over 396,000,000 results! Wow, that's a lot. The first result is from Wikipedia in which it describes social networking as social structure where individuals and organizations can be tied to each other. Sounds like a great idea!
Then some of the results that follow are Friendster, Zooped, and Ning. All social networks that are trying to connect people whehter you went to school together, worked together (Ning is a social network for workers in the emergency services field), or are simply trying to connect with others through the world wide web. Almost sounds too good to be true. Here is a site that helps you build your own social network.
In our ECMP 455 class this week, we are to blog about how we view our own digital life in terms of public vs. private. This blog written by a PHd canidate at the University of California does a great job of explaining exactly what the public and private spheres in the world wide web encompass.
This week a friend of mine put an invitation on Facebook for her house warming party. If you think about it, instead of making 45 phone calls in this ever so busy world we live in, she did what could have taken her hours to do in about 5 minutes! Now that's making technology work for you. In this blog I was reading, the writer who was hesitant on joining Facebook, realized that it does have it's advantages. On the "flip-side" of this, if a young person put an invitation to a party on Facebook, things could get out of hand very easily.
So in answering the question should I social network and what does this mean to my private life? I believe that for myself, it comes down to common sense. I do not and would not post a picture or blog that could potentially harm me. Now I know that pretty much that may only happen in a "perfect world". As Dean said in our last class, when pictures are posted, the viewer does not always know the context of the picture. This is very true and perhaps one of the reason why I sometimes ignore or decline friend requests and avoid social networks such as The Social Networking Weblog.
Once you begin to social network, you make your private life available at the touch of a finger!


Blogger Erin said...

Interesting thoughts. I would never think of posting a party on facebook, but the time factor makes it sound somewhat apealing. Although it is nice to save some time, isn't is alwasys the same old thing, what are we loosing or gaining from convinence?
I guess it is a personal thing and each person ways it out in their own mind. I am finding that as the younger generations get older, they don't look at convinence the same way.
Keep up the good thoughts.

3:28 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

Using technology to save time is why we use it especially as teachers. We won't have enough time in the day to do all we need to do, but with networking blogs wiki's and my new favourite tool RSS we can get other people and our computers to do the work for us. Nice post Jane. Brian

1:11 PM  

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