I Just Don’t Get it Yet — Social Networks

This is what I feel like sometimes.  I’m one of the little yellow dots.

Ok!  First! Understand that these comments come from someone, who probably just doesn’t get it yet.  There has been a flurry over the past couple of weeks to set up social networks for education 2.0 issues, using a social networking tool called Ning (a great name, by the way, as long as you don’t have a cold).  I’ve joined Library 2.0, School 2.0, and Classroom 2.0, and have accepted lots of requests to be people’s friends (well, at least four).

I must confess that I am a little under-impressed.  I have a personal page, just like my daughter’s Facebook page.  I have an unflattering picture of me there, a place to put a blog, a profile (which I’ve scaled way back), a picture of Steve Hargadon (best part of the page), and something called a Chatter.

The Chatter intrigues me, but it appears to be only for people who visit my page, and I don’t think I’ve visited the pages of any other users.  I guess I’m a real digital recluse.  There is a forum, with some great conversations, but it’s a forum.  Nothing new there.  Now let me repeat.  I accept that I may simply be overlooking something here that’s hitting me over the head, but I’m to dull to know it.  So please explain. 

I’m wondering if this sort of social network “place” is really more for kids.  Children need a clubhouse, a place where they can be themselves, pretend to be somebody else, make up their own rules, and dream of other places and times.  But clubhouses have walls, as does Ning!  It seems to be a container and less in the spirit of small pieces loosely joined (reference book by David Weinberger).

I don’t need someplace else to go to on the Internet.  I need it to come to me, to my aggregator, or my mail box.  I need it to be organic, infinitely shapable, and to be a valuable conversation.

So what am I not getting here?

Got to go, Vicki Davis wants to be my friend

2¢ Worth!

I just learned that Ning will be adding a Wiki tool in June!

Image Citation:
Parks, J.. “GlocalVersation.” vaXzine’s Photostream. 17 Jun 2006. 30 Mar 2007 <http://flickr.com/photos/vaxzine/168684755/>.

Author: David Warlick

David Warlick has been an educator for the past 40+ years. He continues to do some writing, but is mostly seeking his next intersect between play, passion and purpose, dabbling in photography, drone videography and music production.