32 thoughts on “The Social Map To Where?”

  1. Personally I think the whole social thing is maddening and is really hurting “true news” and turning good bloggers into rockstar celebrities so full of themselves as to think that people really care that they are going to the store, walking the dog, or taking a dump.

    They spend time dickering on twitter when they could actually be preparing and writing stuff of substance on their blog. Personally, since twitter ad numerous clones came to the scene I have seen a real drop in the quality and relevance of the blog posts out there on the web.

    All this has me really concerned on where this whole social thing is going… personally, I am fed up. I can’t wait for the rest of the socially rejected people who rely on people “friending” them to feel important to finally realize that their entire “social network” is a complete farce.

    Give me some good apps that service me well and leave them at that, dont sour them with the whole social angle that gives me yet another network to keep track of.

    There, I’ve vented… back to my cave.

  2. I don’t feel exactly the same. I agree that the overall social media landscape is frothy, and that with the barriers to entry falling down, we are seeing many differeny social “soup d’jours” (such as FriendFeed, SocialThing, Iminta, etc.), with a new one every week or so. That said, there is something fundamental and important happening right now, which is the emergence of the next phase of the web, the Social Web, in which who-you-are and who-you-know can make your online experience less sophomoric and trashy, and way more meaninful. No, it’s not the color wars. There is more to this whole thing, based on who you know and really care about. Recent post here: http://therealmccrea.wordpress.com/2008/03/30/centralized-me-on-the-web/

  3. I don’t believe that the question is whether or not we can “live without” these services. Each of them adds value in a different way to different people. I say let people pick their toolbox and like Loic suggested, allow them to aggregate it where it makes most sense to them.

  4. most of the things on that chart are recreational stuff… which i guess can be addictive at times but can always be avoided. i wonder if there is a means to elevate the social platform to handle our bare essential needs.

  5. Hi Om:
    You missed some important tools like micro blogging (twitter); RSS feed aggregators (netvibes, google reader). I agree with you on some of the other tools which you can live without. Regardless of whether you like some tool or not, the bigger question is- Don’t you want some kind of unified aggregation of these tools. I mean a Unified interface for My Social-Personal-Professional interface. So Om, what’s your opinion about social data portability, Do u think this is just media eyewash or this will someday become a reality.


  6. In my case, Its going to be more or less the same things you listed.

    Gmail, Flickr, Blogger(Blogs), Twitter, Facebook and Google Reader. Add in gTalk which keeps me connected.

    Rest all – well, everything else can shutdown for me because feeds are there which I subscribe to 😉

  7. Om, I feel like the best answer to questions like the one you pose comes from all the people out there who have never heard of GigaOm. Short answer – no, you’re not alone at all.

  8. “.. Ideally, anyuser would like to keep all his important belonging at one place where trust and faith stays. This is against the philosophy and elderly advise “never keep all the eggs in one basket” but if it can be tightly protected and integarted … what is the harm?

    My trust in Google services has been nothing less than Sun and Star. But a million Euro question … Can Google ever fill in the space… and in time?..”

  9. i do not use any of them. but if they went away, the parts of the internet i do use would then be flash mobbed by the folk who currently use these toys. so i hope they stay!

  10. Hey Om thanks for your note but you should look closer at the services and software on the map, there is WordPress on it. You’re saying you would not miss any of them but it seems to me your blog is running on WP 🙂

    See you soon!

  11. Ah! I take this one back, it is actually me who should read better as you said “barring” certain services.

    Excuse my french! My english fortunately gets a little better as I live here now.

  12. Om,

    Actually, I think the “TO WHERE” aspect of your question is on the cusp of getting really interesting.

    Sure, there are a lot of forgettable services out there. But, starting from the present, the process of creating and maintaining a blog is pretty compelling. So, too, is participating in threads and posts by commenting (although I wish I could track comments more globally).

    I can’t say that I have totally figured twitter out, but there are enough times a week that I want to broadcast something, and its structure is asynchronous, so what the heck.

    In fact, the combination of my blog, my LinkedIn profile and my participation in the blogosphere has really been a game changer in terms of bread-crumbing me into diverse and interesting conversations.

    It’s chaotic, socially engaging, intellectually stimulating and forces some measure of conversational discipline.

    By contrast, my ‘treasured’ photos, videos and music feel like they are just at the first heartbeat stage of their social potential but I also think that that aspect of social media starts to be born once the iPhone SDK ships.

    At that point, developers will start cobbling together social apps that leverage iPhone/iPod touch UI, media and playback functions as a front end for some of these services and the underlying data. And then the social map becomes more of a MAP-plication (bad syntax).

    Food for thought.


    On Intellectual Honesty

  13. I don’t think that most of us would be the target market for these social technologies. It would be interesting to look at the collage of social networking tools from the perspective of a teen, for instance, or to diagram the overlay of tools in order of use.

    I’m struck by the fact that mobile tools are completely missing from this map, as are face-to-face and 1:1 communication. These tools are also a vital part of anyone’s communication strategy. The webbiness of the diagram seems to represent a deeply American social networking strategy (and yes, I realize Loic is French but living in SF) — people in Shanghai or London or Milan would employ different strategies and more mobile tools.

  14. I agree with Molly. It’s hard to put ourselves in the shoes of others when it comes to these social networks. I don’t ever see myself joining MySpace, much less missing it. But the younger crowd loves it.

    I belong to Facebook and LinkedIn. Facebook is so much fun, but truth be told, LinkedIn is actually more valuable to me. It fits the types of interactions that I need right now in my life – professional. Facebook is great as well, I just need to find more time for it. I look at Facebook as the core lifestream social network. Kids, job, politics, blogs, pix, etc.

    More thoughts on what makes the different social networks tick here: http://tinyurl.com/yunskp

  15. “My Social-professional-personal life would not be impacted a bit” —
    Depends on your age & where you are in life.
    For some people, mainly the young, it’s the UTILIZATION factor of services that people can use to create their own identity, brand, fame, business, etc. For an older person, already established, it could be seen as “just another service.” Younger people will adapt and use for their own personal use, to create something, or just for fun. I think all these services are needed because from them, we will be able to find enlightenment. What that means is the ability to think of better & more improved ways of these services. Without that competition & more services, we’d be stagnant.

    It’s not about a person should use them all. It’s about what service is best for 1 individual at a particular period of time. For businesses, the key is finding long term loyalty in a user – aka MySpace, Facebook, etc.

  16. @ Deva,

    I think you are spot on. The whole conversation takes a different meaning/value proposition once we leave the hot house that is SV/blogosphere and get real people involved.

    In fact, the big challenge for me is to find these alternative opinions.

  17. Meh. Social networking is about exciting as melted chocolate, it might have been good, but …. nah….. why bother, I’ll just stick it in the bin.

  18. Everyone is a target for the social networking trend. Let’s face it it is a trend and eventually people will forget about myspace and facebook when they move on to the next fascinating technology.

  19. I have become quite found of Pownce recently. If more of my friends used it I think it would be a great tool for sharing simple pieces of information. It does events and video way better then Facebook and the such.

  20. I guess I’d snarkily reply, “Psst,it’s all about the conversation stupid.” All of these are tools, some better some worse for enabling communication between people. Obviously some have more of a fun orientation and some better-equipped for business. Why is it the geeks are so focused on the technology and forget about why it’s there in the first place? “Psst, that’s why they’re geeks stupid!”

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