I like Fb. It got me into Information Studies. It is my preferred way of communicating, so I tend to just use it without thinking too much about it. This week I had to stop and examine it a bit more than I normally would. I was doing some work for an organisation and I wanted to have a look at their page, but they did not have one. Instead, they have a profile, and they were happy enough with their choice. They had a few reasons for this but the main was that it was taking them too long to build an engaged community so they took the easy route and started banging out friend requests.
Lots of companies do that, but I imagine that they will run into trouble. I have heard that Zuckerburg and his happy camp of friends will close you down as soon as they get round to it. With billions of users, some companies take the chance that they could hide with us sheeple. Now that Fb has to answer to shareholders I imagine that the pressure might be on to herd all their potential ad buyers onto the right side of the fence so they can subliminally influence the rest of us. I don’t usually like sticking up for giant organisations, but in this case, I agree with them.
Social networks are built on the concept of sharing. We like to share. We like to share with people who like to share. If some of that sharing involves the passing of goods and services aswell as information, then it is good that we can do this with the people that we share with. There are hundreds of tradesmen where I live, but when I need something done, I go to the people that I know, that I share a network with. I am ok with that.
What I am not ok with is a rat, and I can smell them. A rat is someone who lets on to be my friend but who just wants to get their paws on my goods. That is what profiles that should be pages makes me feel like.