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Author Topic: Blog Essay: In Praise of Online Obscurity  (Read 3508 times)

mouser

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Blog Essay: In Praise of Online Obscurity
« on: February 16, 2010, 07:21:25 AM »
Nothing really surprising here, but I think as people get wrapped up in trying to get bigger and bigger, they can fail to recognize the downsides of this..

Quote
When it comes to your social network, bigger is better. Or so we’re told. The more followers and friends you have, the more awesome and important you are. That’s why you see so much oohing and aahing over people with a million Twitter followers. But lately I’ve been thinking about the downside of having a huge online audience. When you go from having a few hundred Twitter followers to ten thousand, something unexpected happens: Social networking starts to break down.



from http://www.waxy.org

Stephen66515

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Re: Blog Essay: In Praise of Online Obscurity
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2010, 09:12:57 AM »
In regards to this, I recently wiped out 400 people on Facebook that I never speak to, mainly because I didn't want them knowing what I was up to, but secondly because I kept forgetting who i knew and who i didnt know  :trout:

housetier

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Re: Blog Essay: In Praise of Online Obscurity
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2010, 01:30:33 PM »
The essay confirms my suspicions about these social networks. When someone is "over-connected" the connections lose meaning; I think this is because most people instinctively know that someone just cannot have that many 'friends', not even 'acquaintances'. I believe this is not a hard limit, but there clearly is a limit.

If I had to answer honestly how many friends I have, I would say "a hand full at most". All the other people I get along with, I regularly chat with, I meet and work with, I go out with: they are not friends, whom I could call upon at any time for any reason and they would drop everything to hear me out. This might be a dramatic definition of friend, but keep in mind it is not set in stone; it is not easy to draw a line (because I don't really want to).

I like being online and having all my pals there. But seldomly it goes beyond that. Having said that, I do not want to push away anyone! Feelings or sympathies can change. However, I do not expect to become friends with everyone I get along with: There is a difference between trust (if not to say love) and getting along.

So, yeah, I do have a twitter account but it has been dormant since 2007; I used to be on myspace but the software they use is just a pile of crap; I closed my facebook account because I couldn't see the point of having to re-ignore people again who I had avoided in the past. On the other hand, I really enjoy donationcoder.com, but even here I do not know many people.

rjbull

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Re: Blog Essay: In Praise of Online Obscurity
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2010, 02:57:02 PM »
I really enjoy donationcoder.com, but even here I do not know many people.
Same here, but I also think that in a sense there aren't all that many people to know.  Have you noticed how many posts seem to come from a relatively small pool of people, versus the total number of members, 203,251 at the time of writing?  I.e, that most of the posts are from familiar names?

kyrathaba

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Re: Blog Essay: In Praise of Online Obscurity
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2010, 06:23:59 PM »
That's because any group of people -- be it a website, a church family, a club, etc. -- will have a nucleus of active, "go-getter" type people, and a much larger group of orbiting "hangers-on".  

rjbull

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Re: Blog Essay: In Praise of Online Obscurity
« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2010, 01:53:27 PM »
a nucleus of active, "go-getter" type people, and a much larger group of orbiting "hangers-on".  
I wonder if there's a fairly standard ratio of one to the other?

vixay

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Re: Blog Essay: In Praise of Online Obscurity
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2010, 11:02:17 PM »
http://en.wikipedia....ki/Dunbar%27s_number

The theoretical hard limit on how many social connections we can actively maintain.

About 150.

The discussion reminded me about this.
"Drunk on the Nectar of Life!" -me