Blog in isolation There is a radiant darkness upon us

strategies for making friends on social networks

Early Jurassic - Mum takes you to playgroup, kicking and screaming and your friends are forced upon you. Free milk at 11 am.

Cretaceous - Primary school. You go round to Robert's for tea and Robert comes round to your house for tea. Painfully shy in female company.

Middle Monolithic - Secondary school - you hang out with the kids who play football and avoid those who threaten you with knives at the bus stop.

Triassic - Football, gigs, pubs. The best time of your life. With the best friends of your life. None of them will ever do FaceBook but that doesn't matter.

Late Mesozoic - University - no real strategy here. If someone stands their round, then that's good enough.

Web 0.1 (alpha) - Usenet, flame fests, email using elm on an amber VT100. Avoid people who use VMS at all costs.

Web 1.0 - IRC is just like a Friday night in the pub. There will be fights at closing time.

Web 1.0 - surf the internet, send large attachments (amusing photos) to colleagues every Friday afternoon.

Web 2.0 - social networking. Accept blindly absolutely any friend request. Approach complete strangers and ask them to be your 'special friends'. Friendship isn't friendship - it's a bragging contest.

Web 2.0 (beta) - Follow Scoble's example and be slightly more selective. Cull thousands of so-called 'friends' in futile attempt to avoid information overload.

Web 3.0 - Twitter - the endless, interminable byte stream of inane drivel. Until Stephen Fry signs up which makes it all alright. Stalk celebrities.

Web 3.0 RC3 - Finally it dawns on you.

  • People on Posterous mainly like talking about Posterous
  • People on FriendFeed mainly like singing the praises of FriendFeed.
  • People on Twitter mainly like talking about Twitter. Repeat ad infinitum.
  • People on identi.ca love identi.ca and open source and despise the evil borg.
  • People in UK tend to have more friends in the UK
  • You are on first names terms with the developers of Disqus and they fix stuff - just for you.
  • If you're a keen photographer, try Flickr.
  • If you like football, seek out people who like football.
  • If someone Like's a post/tweet you wrote, it's possible (but not certain) you will like their outputs.
  • If someone lives on your road, it doesn't mean they're your friend. There's a good reason you haven't had your neighbours round for coffee since last Christmas.
  • If people actively dislike your output, it is less likely they will be a good friend.
  • If people say 'Great, interesting, thought provoking post', it's likely they are trying to sell you a 'Penis Enlargement Kit' (or worse).

Web 4.0 - The end of the world. Social Networking dies and we all adjourn to the pub (again) and play board games.

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