MVP BLOG - Yet another post about Facebook…
I have been meaning to put together this post for a while. There has been quite a bit of noise on Facebook lately, mostly dealing with privacy issues. I will not go into those issues here, but I do want to take a different tack at what might be the issue.
I first started using Facebook as a business tool (at the time most of my friends and family were not on the site). I saw Facebook as eGroups 2.0, as many entrepreneurs had put together great groups for events and discussions about the LA startup scene. Over time, ex-colleagues, ex-classmates, friends and family joined and friend-ed me. Initially I hesitate on connecting with personal relationships on the site, with fear of the worlds colliding. George Costanza said this best.
The thought is that we have one face for work, one for our family, one for our friends, etc… An illustrative description would be:
Each of the personas was handled online by a different social network: Friends (MySpace/Friendster), Family (Geni?), and Business (Linkedin). Then Facebook, in capturing, all your relationship interactions in a single location tried to combine them and get to know you, really, really well:
Of course, this exercise can be extended to many more dimensions and sub-groups. If you know my conversations with friends, family and work relationships, you really do know a lot about me.
The solution, at least in my opinion, would be as simple as allowing us to create separate personas within Facebook. So there is no chance of the worlds colliding. This way Facebook still gets an understanding of all of your relationships and hence can serve better advertisements to you, but your relationships do not know everything about you. Seems like a reasonable comprise, if we can regain trust in Facebook.
For his part, Mark Zuckerberg is realizing the enormity of this predicament. Here is his post on the Washington Post attempting to address some of the issues.
10/04/2010 14:15 - mike j
Great article. Could not find the Mark Zuckerberg post. Can you please provide it? R/mike j