five friend types of social media

Mashable has categorized all of the friends that you keep in your social networks into five handy groups. This is a good primer for someone that's new to social media, and might not understand the types of relationships that are possible.

I believe it goes deeper than five categories, although the cocktail party analogy is a good one. I could meet someone at a party tonight that could very well become my best friend for life. Or a new business partner. Or who will introduce me to a new client. However real friendship is more complex than that.

I have clients, vendors and associates who I would trust with the keys to my house, or one of my children. And I have personal friends that I wouldn't allow to drive my car, or lend $20 to. Unfortunately, not everyone fits into a bucket so easily. So it's not that you need to organize or tag your friends into folders, but perhaps it's good to understand what's possible.

If nothing else, they'll serve as five sweet bullets in your PowerPoint presentation about social media. Enjoy.

1 comment:

Ben Kunz said...

Shiv Singh of Avenue A | Razorfish turned me on to Mark Granovetter, a sociologist who wrote about "weak ties" in social networks. I'm fascinated by the idea that new social media technology, while it has limits, is an engine empowering us to have more human contacts than possible before. The trick is understanding how such contacts are different.

One thing I'm pondering is that perhaps the types of relationships aren't different, but rather, perhaps humans are more honest now about how we compartmentalize our own internal modes. Sometimes I'm working. Sometimes I'm playful. Sometimes I want a buddy to drink a beer with, or build a business with, or share a brainstorm.

The multiple types of social media -- LinkedIn/business, Facebook/youth, Twitter/debate -- lend themselves to different aspects of who we think we are.

Maybe our friends are not different. Maybe we're just building different connections based on the changing modes in our own heads.

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