MySpace is dead, long live Facebook
I've been a member for about 3 or 4 weeks, and in that time I've been silently cursed, had a sheep thrown at me, been turned into a Zombie and been poked more times than I care to remember. I've baked cakes, thrown a few sheep back, written and drawn grafitti on various friends' walls. I've also found myself updating my Facebook status by mobile on the bus while on the way home from a big night out (not recommended).
You might surmise that there's been a bit of time wasting, and you'd be right, although I'd claim that participating fully is an essential part of my research.
But it's not all fun and games. I've joined some groups and taken part in group discussions. Today I set up a group for some ex-colleagues to share some of the fun times we had working together. I've searched and found a few old friends and although I don't necessarily want to keep in close contact with all of them it's nice to see what they're up to.
Unlike MySpace, my friends are people I actually know. Paul McCartney and Donald Trump haven't found me here yet and if they did I'd probably not add them to my friends list. Facebook is fun, for sure, but it's also a bit more grown up and it seems a bit more real. I feel that as more people I know join, I'll genuinely keep more in touch with them. OK, it's not the same as going out or even picking up the phone, but where we've stopped doing both of these things any contact is better than none.
I like the level of privacy - people can't see your details unless you let them - and I like the 3rd party applications that you can add to your profile: I've just scratched the surface but I can see how this aspect of Facebook will grow and grow.
The one area that I can see becoming a little tricky is the line between work and play. If you work in a company would you want your boss as a friend, able to see all your messages and what you've been up to? As a consultant, would I want a client looking at my profile and seeing parts of my personal life? I suppose it's like an industry party. Have fun, let your hair down but don't say or do things that you might regret in the morning.
Anyway, so far so good.
And don't get me started on twitter...