Friday, September 25, 2009

To Un-learn Social Networking!!!

Today was a wonderful experience. The Marketing Continuum at the Shailesh J. Mehta School of Management, IIT Bombay was a grand success with loads of illustrious speakers and many videos impressing upon us the true nature and color of the marketing profession.
One of the speakers was Mr. Paritosh Joshi ( follow on Twitter @paritoshZero) and he gave a wonderful seat of pants lecture, w/o the aid of a ppt on New Age Marketing. Apart from witnessing some stunning advertisements and marketing campaigns (yes!!! there is a helluva difference between them), we also witnessed a deluge of mentions and praises for Facebook and Twitter, most notably Burger King's campaign that left many people without friends but with loads of Whoopers and of course, the honorable mention of Twitter in bringing the Iran protests.
But amidst all the hosannas sung to social networking and crowdsourcing, I am trying to play Devil's Advocate to the heroes that Facebook and Twitter have become. I am not prophesizing any near term overkill of these phenomena but am wondering whether in the middle of the good these are doing, what is the price we are paying for it.
Of course, the most evident is the absolute lack of privacy for the user besides the issues of identity theft and unsavory incidents of accounts being hacked. On a stratospheric level, these interactions are actually replacing real interactions at the local chaiwalla and not only is that poor guy not making money but we have also lost the personal touch in the middle of the Tweets, RTs, # tags, pokes and quizzes etc etc etc and God knows wat else.
Many of my friends have lamented my absence from Facebook but I have strictly limited myself to one general networking (Orkut), one blog, one microblog (Twitter i.e.) and one professional network (LinkedIn) and if you feel that its insufficient connectivity then its your problem.

/*i have resumed this post after 2 months and in the meanwhile have opened a Facebook account and am regularly playing games and quizzes on it. */

So now with egg on my face I resume my crib about social networking overdose. I have developed a permanent fixation for checking updates on Twitterfox as well as FB and am looking for therapy to cure this.
I am sure many people need it!!!

Posting at 4am is not very good for my health so I'll sign off now!!

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