Reductio ad Myspace
This weekend at the bookstore I browsed through Andrew Keen’s Cult of the Amateur with a lot of interest. I also looked into a book that’s probably at the opposite end of the Web 2.0 Hype-o-Meter, Wikinomics. Keen argues with some justice that with the huge proliferation of blogs, the Internet has become a write-only Darwinian struggle to see who can filibuster the longest, with everyone yapping our heads off and no one really listening.
Wikinomics, on the other hand, left me wondering how I, too, could benefit from this whole massive collaboration thing to become blindingly wealthy and massively collaborated, but I couldn’t come up with anything off the top of my head.
As they say on Ron Popeil Commercials: “But wait, there’s more!”
Now not only can your blog be one of over 50 million blogs in the keyboardosphere, now you can be the first on your block to have your own social network, thanks to Ning.com. In the words of Ning CEO, Gina Bianchini:
“Marc and I founded Ning in October 2004 to give everyone the opportunity to create your own social networks for anything.”
Atta girl, Gina. That’s just what we needed, social networks for anything!
And in the true spirit of Web 2.0, I have decided that if I can, of course that means I should, so I am now the proud owner of not just one, but TWO social networks, with me as the one member each!
That was the whole problem with MySpace, come to think of it – they let YOU in. Now we can each have our own MySpace, which for the sake of clarity we can call MyMySpace, to distinguish it from YourMySpace and ThatOtherGuysMySpace.
No, but seriously, come join me. We can massively collaborate, at least on a small scale. Won’t that be cozy?
The first network I noticed when poking around Ning was the virtual Sangha. Hey great, I thought, I’m a Buddhist, but it turns out that one’s by invitation only.
Well, at least I’m not the only anti-social Buddhist with his own social network.
But I have **two **of them. So there.
After that, I decided to check out the RightHealth Social network. At the right are some of the forum questions from RightHealth so you can get an idea of the quality of the discourse. (Click to enlarge).
I didn’t wait for it to get this bad, it was the first thing I bumped into.
I wonder if I started a Luddite group if Andrew Keen would join me.