With the recent downturn, employees across world are becoming insecure about their jobs, they are thronging networking sites and in the process, little known sites too have become popular, while taking users of sites like LinkedIn to a little over 35 million. Even Facebook, which was vastly recognised for its social networking has crossed 175 Million users. A trend reflected here
The big difference from the adoption of such sites last year compared to this year is that a large number of people who would want to connect earlier so as to spread their profile around have transformed to a community who would want to connect to be "visible" and "employable" at the sametime.
An interesting fact here is the fact that the difference between Social and Business Networking seems to be essentially blurring,forcing more and more users to adopt to networking of some sorts. However as most Anthropoligist would argue, its impossible to maintain more than 150 social relationships, while for a person on LinkedIn, inactive relationships seems plausible.
This is where the essential line is drawn, People invading Facebook for career opportunities, need to understand that while Facebook could be a medium of community for certain organizations, it largely remains a Social Networking site. At the sametime, a site like LinkedIn or Xing, promotes Business Networking and keeps social networkers at bay.
As the article quotes
It’s a safe bet that if the economic downturn grinds on, we will witness further conflict between the nonrational instinct to connect socially and the rational calculation to build social capital for professional reasons. If so, it may put further strain on the notion of an online friend. We may find ourselves asking more frequently that age-old question, “What are friends for?”
In such a scenario, it remains to be seen how Facebook transforms to manage both Social and Business Networking. !!!
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- ▼ March 2009 (4)