Parents are just starting to take online social networking seriously, not only to make friends with their kids, but to form their own social networks. Many moms I know use the old fashioned network of making friends related to their kid’s schools or activities. That is not such a bad thing, it helps their kids develop friends when families spend time together. After a wide business network I formed working at Deloitte before kids, I wanted more then a network related to my kids…. So I decided to try online social networking.
Once a parent decides to jump on the online social networking bandwagon, which social network should they join? How about LinkedIn or Plaxo for business connections? Facebook for a cross section of business and social friends? Set up a VOX neighborhood? Email with your Yahoo Groups? Create a blog with a blogroll? For Single Moms Mayors, put racy pictures of themselves on a MySpace page? Or for those with attention deficit, just twitter their friends. How about social networking your tots on totspot or babies on babyspot? Sports fans can network on BallHype. Technical women can email with their Systers. Female bloggers have BlogHer. And for moms have tons of options, so much so I added a typelist on my blog for mom social sites.
I joined Facebook and LinkedIn. I use LinkedIn for business but seem to spend more time on Facebook because I am developing a cross section of Facebook friends from work and personal. My husband wants us to use Plaxo… I belong to many Yahoo Groups that I read in digest form only (25 emails combined in one). I feel cyber close with all the mom bloggers of the Silicon Valley, Chicago, DC Metro and NYC mom bloggers. But, I feel overwhelmed trying to keep up with my multiple identities across all my online networks.
I was relieved to read a blog post (from Nick O’Neill) detailing Charlene Li ‘s presentation at the Graphing Social Patterns conference in San Diego (one of the women on my technology innovators list). Here is a tidbit about Charlene Li’s thoughts on mulitple identities:
"As she suggests, eventually we will have a universal identity which
will most likely come from our email address. At the same time we will
see universal identity foundations emerge as leaders such as OpenID.
Additionally, a few major players will serve as the main focal points
and interesting enough these will be the older companies such as
Yahoo!, Microsoft, Google and Plaxo."
All I can say is – WHEN, tell me HOW to get my universal identity. Just make sure my friends all know where to find me…