Monday, July 23, 2007

When a Facebook user got a job...

Yet another glossy news article declares, "E-mail is, like, soooo dead". You may be right in thinking the article was written by a college-going intern. Not surprising, the article quotes a group of 'teenage entrepreneurs' who used social networks to communicate, using email only to "talk to adults". Maybe these kids are in the party business.

A lot has been written about the Facebook platform and how it can be a business tool as well. I don't want to sound 'alarmist' (as some have called me often) but you don't always do business with your friends and not every customer has to be your friend. Don't you hate the sales Rep who hovers around you, trying to be the best friend you supposedly never had?

If you have read "the 48 laws of power", then you remember it says,

Never put too Much Trust in Friends, Learn how to use Enemies

Be wary of friends-they will betray you more quickly, for they are easily aroused to envy. They also become spoiled and tyrannical. But hire a former enemy and he will be more loyal than a friend, because he has more to prove. In fact, you have more to fear from friends than from enemies. If you have no enemies, find a way to make them.

So, there you go.

I would like to see an article which reports about what tools young people will use as working adults. In fact, one of the people surveyed for the above article, Martina Butler says, "I only use e-mail for my business and to get sponsors". This negates the point of the article. I wonder if the purpose of the article was to merely wash one's hands, so to speak, in the running gag of Social Network/Facebook hype.

All things in this world have a purpose, thus if you say you are eating apples these days, that doesn't imply you don't like oranges or oranges are dead. Young people all throughout have loved a free thing, an affordable thing, a fun thing, - IM, social networking, note passing, free local calls...anything with a promise of immediate gratification - such as an instant response.

Will they IM on mobile as often as they poke someone on Facebook, considering IM on mobiles is pricey?

When you post a message on a Facebook wall, it often becomes a public thing. Do you want your business deals to be as open?

What you might be doing instead is initiating an acquaintance on Facebook/LinkedIn and take it forward in a style that brings productive results - email, forums, phone calls, group chat, face-to-face meetings and a wide range of other avaliable tools go into the mix.

Doing business requires time and careful deliberations. It is not easy as poking someone,"are you going to party tonight?"

When we were young we used whatever we found available. But, when we grow up, to make a living, we will use all means available. And then some.

A word to all young people - just wait till you have to send your C.V. along with a cover letter. (or, till your boss sends you a "Make me a friend" request)

Ironically, Facebook, Myspace (and others) send you an email to tell you that you have a private message.

'If you can't start a meme, spread one' is one of the long-lasting lessons from the A-lister oriented new media journalism and traditional news outlets pick up from where the blogging world ended - parroting is the in-thing. I wanted to quote something from Plutarch but I am no A-lister.

(P. S.: Some disclusure - this writer finds IM, alerts from social networks too annoying. And, no I don't find it worthwhile to search for school friends who weren't that close anyway).

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