Let’s talk all about religion, but don’t mention God. (Chapter 2)

Posted on July 7, 2011

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I was excited to jump into Chapter 2 and start reading about the social networking sites I use and love.  I’m an avid Facebook user and I’ve been a huge fan of the company ever since I read David Kirkpatrick’s The Facebook Effect.  Imagine my surprise, then, to find out that Facebook would not be discussed in The Social Media Bible.  Instead, I was filled in on its red-headed step-sister, MySpace.  Does anyone use MySpace?  I haven’t heard anyone mention their MySpace page for nearly five years.  Talking about MySpace seems equivalent to discussing new cell phone technology by reviewing a phone without texting capabilities.  How can a “bible” on social media leave out the most influential player?  According to the author, Facebook declined to participate.  To be brutally honest, I questioned this author’s credibility if the biggest social networking site was not interested in being part of his book.

“By the time you read this book, Facebook will likely have exceeded half a billion active users.  It announced 400 million in February 2010 but has been adding about 25 million new users every month.  The company is increasingly embedded in the fabric of modern life and culture.  One frequently overhears the word “Facebook” in conversations in public places in almost every country, not matter what the language.  One dictionary named “unfriend” the 2009 word of the year.” (Kirkpatrick, The Facebook Effect, 2010)

In my opinion, MySpace is passe.  Yes, there were some aspects of MySpace that were appealing to users–like being able to design your own page with wallpaper and graphics.  I had a MySpace page once.  In fact, I probably still do, but I NEVER use it and I don’t have any friends that are still on MySpace.  So, why are we talking about it?  The Social Media Bible really needed to include a discussion about Facebook if it was going to claim to be a “bible” on the subject.

The explanation/discussion on LinkedIn seemed much more useful and relevant.  I have a LinkedIn profile, but I’ve done very little on the website.  I guess you could say that I’m in-between “lurker” and “novice.”  Anytime I have tried to connect with someone or find someone on LinkedIn, I’ve found that I need to upgrade my account to one with a fee.  Unwillingly to invest, I haven’t made that commitment yet.  Because I’m a cheap skate, I don’t think I’ve seen what LinkedIn can really do.  Safko’s comparison to six degrees of Kevin Bacon sparked my interest.  After all, I may need a connection to the President some day, so perhaps I should beef up my presence.

My takeaway from Chapter 2…invest more time and effort on LinkedIn and forget about MySpace.

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