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how many followers you got, mon?

I linked to something from another webthing a few days ago. The author talks about why she 'might have quit' Facebook and three of the listed reasons have stuck in my mind since originally reading the article:

  • I wanted to get to know people in person
  • I wanted people to get to know me in person, but only if I like them
  • I had forgotten how to surf the internet for interesting content

There's something I find really interesting about social networking. While the various social networks do provide a way for real friends (and family) to stay in touch, I think for many, the emphasis is on how many followers they can gain. Somewhere along the line, the concept of 'friendship' has become diluted. People think of followers as friends and that's just not necessarily true.

The majority of the lasting friendships in my life come from knowing people in person and them knowing me in person. Face-to-face interaction makes a big difference in getting to know someone. There are a just a few close friends in my life who I've never actually met in person (though I intend to). Having been online for many years, I think many people (including myself) are not exactly what they may appear to be on the web.

On that other point still stuck in my mind from the article, I just need to say I have not forgotten how to surf the web for interesting content, nor have I lost interest in doing so. But I've got a feeling that many people have, or at least no longer have time for such pursuits because they spend so much time on social network sites. I'm not on Facebook and though I'm back on Twitter for now, I doubt it'll be long before I leave it again for the umpteenth time. This whole social networking thing is not my favorite thing about the web, thank you.


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