Are We Over Social Networking

The question ‘are we over social networking?’ comes up a lot. I have often thought that it is all too much. Facebook alone is enough to drive you to the brink but when you add other avenues into the mix like Foursquare, Instagram, Google+, Oink, Pinterest etc etc. it all becomes ridiculously overwhelming. Basically managing all your social networking takes too much work. Unfortunately no one has really developed the perfect tool or interface to manage and update your services from one only central point. So until that is the case you may be on your way to a meltdown.

My question though is are we really over social networking like we hear? My response to that is no we are not over social networking, we are just over people. I have spent some time looking at my own social networking portfolio and each app in that. You can see and feel the different uses for each app and they are very different. Facebook still has us all hooked to a point where it is trying to be everything to everyone. But if you look closely at the information being shared it really is pointless. Do we really get that much enjoyment out of knowing that someone sat next to a smelly person on the bus, or that someone changed their shoes. probably not. the volume of crap that is passed on through Facebook really doesn’t give it any direction and has contributed to us being over people.

Twitter is easier to deal with because you generally get the information you want and if not can easily and quickly zip through updates. Others like Instagram can be good and again really serve a direction in that it’s for people that like looking at or sharing pictures. Pinterest although a fledgling app takes it a step further by categorising photo’s that you follow and over time depending on it’s uptake is a great app.

So considering the fact that it’s people and not social networking we are getting over has actually given some clarity to how I view my social networking accounts. I’m yet to formulate a strategy but it actually has changed how I look at those sites. It’s something worth considering. I feel that the constant barrage of useless/random information on sites such as FB will end up being it’s downfall. The people that post all the time if you notice tend to be those who are all about themselves and self promotion. You do have to wonder what is missing in someones life when that is the case, but that’s a different post.

For sites such as FB, they can easily fix this by adopting an easy user friendly categorisation system like Google+ with it’s circles. the user interface for setting this all up on FB is time consuming and not user friendly. But if they made it simple and added some features such as the news feed showing a default list as chosen by the user you could easily avoid the crap without having to delete or hide all posts by a particular person. There should be more flexibility and if FB is to survive it needs to allow more user friendly interfaces that are quick and easy and tailored to what the user wants to see.