As a general rule I feel that social networks are the Internet version of a great big colossal time sucking abyss.
One way to help tame the clutter is to cut down on the intake.
Gaea Honeycutt of Honeycutt Consulting LLC in Alexandria, says she visits her three main networking sites, LinkedIn, Plaxo and Facebook, just once a week, unless there is an urgent invitation or “I need to do some shameless self-promotion.”
Honeycutt deletes every e-mail notification she receives from those sites, knowing the messages will be there waiting when she logs in. And she establishes one network as the primary target.
For her, that network is LinkedIn. “It fulfills pretty much all of my needs,” Honeycutt says. “I get to establish expertise by answering questions, expand my network through a well-respected site, increase my [search engine optimization] and do an end run around the limits of my network by joining groups.” (via washington business journal)
If you must do it, I would suggest that you do what I call anti-social networking, which simply means severely limit your access to your great big colossal time sucking abyss and limit the great big colossal time sucking abyss access to you.
Here now are the customary power blogger bullets points on how to practice anti-social networking…
- In the name of everything that you count as holy if your social network has a stand alone client do not leave it open all the time on your desktop while your trying to “work”. You can always find out about what pookies cat is doing later.
- Go into the game with a plan…are you a shameless self promoter like me (please go now to Twitter to follow my every move) or you just lame and lonely? Whatever the reason have a clear motive in mind and review every once in a while whether or not your social network is actual meeting the need.
- Take the 30 seconds required to find out if the person wanting to become part of your “network” is a serial killer before you let them follow you.
- Don’t become part of anybody’s network who’s voice isn’t adding value to your life…in other words limit your useless relationship to real life.
- Be very clear about this…you don’t have any friends on the Internet, these people are all strangers.