Sunday, March 1, 2009

What's the Big Deal About Social Networking?

Ever wonder what happens when the Google search on yourself or your company reflects negative PR? Fear no more, a tarnished past can be rectified by what we call in the business, a scrubber. These hired professionals make a living by cleaning up an image online by providing positive content and also asking sites (and sometimes paying them) to remove comments that are not in your best light.

So, you can see that your online image is important. But what does that mean?

Mitch Wagner of Information Week equates social networking for business online to that of business conference hall chatter. Often what people talk in the hallways at conference centers is far more interesting than what happens in the formal sessions. People have a tendency to believe and value what they hear from people that they trust.

Just to make that conversation interesting let's start a little hall chatter of our own here.

The big news this week is that FaceBook has decided to not only rescind it's stance on changing the terms agreement for it's users but is actually trying out a social networking form of democracy. Users now have 30 days to contribute content and debate about what terms they are willing to agree with. FaceBook has stated publically that they greatly underestimated the sense of ownership that users felt about their profiles and content.

Google is moving more and more towards integrating social networking into their system by adding Friend Connect. Blogger, also owned by Google, can now be integrated into your social network by a log of "followers". What makes this service particularly interesting is that the service also allows it's users to follow the blog interests of others.

Also, Google is the latest to jump onto Twitter. Hurrah!

Other interesting news on the social networking front is that MySpace is moving towards offering their own e-mail service. And a new social networking tool Ginx is now offering the beginnings of a database for choosing from catagories of interest on Twitter. It's the little gadgety things that make life interesting as well as functional. Rock on!

You think this is all very impressive? Think BIGGER. China now sports a social networking service, QZone, that is significanlty larger than FaceBook (and steadily growing).

It's getting crazy out there and we love it.

5 comments:

Ted Hugheman said...

When is it appropriate to give credit to a source of information in my blog.

Beckett Gilchrist said...

Ted,

Whenever you use content of any kind off the internet it is always appropriate to cite it with a backlink. This also helps your SEO rating with Google. If it's a source outside of the internet, just mention it casually.

Alan Grosset said...

Are you sure about social networking being more popular than e-mail? That just sounds impossible.

Beckett Gilchrist said...

Alan,

Well, it was reported that this was a Neilsen rating, which are accurate to a statistical degree. And the numbers were super close. The main point here is that social networking is taking over online communication as a trend. But yes, right now it is close.

Jane Selzel said...

Thanks Beckett. I find myself waiting for your next post. Of course, a recession will do that to a business owner! Good luck!