‘Alan’ raised an excellent point in a comment in one of my earlier posts about grasping any opportunity you can get to meet new people/form friendships..
I do enjoy meeting new people, but at the same time i don’t like to be tied down by them or having them let me down.. given a choice between going out clubbing with a big group of people, or staying in and watching a dvd with the girlfriend, i’d chose the latter time and time again…
That’s because i prefer ‘quality’ time rather than general chit chat, which doesn’t really interest me. They say you could count the number of close friends you have on one hand and it’s true. The likes of bebo/myspace etc.. are just links to people you’ve met or know.. i doubt everyone has 16 best friends or whatever number of thumbnails is displayed on the friends section..
Anyway, on to the positives and negatives of social networking (online & offline)..
The good and the bad
As you can see, my blogroll contains links to blogs i enjoy reading and people that i’ve met in some form (through comments, emails, forums, digg etc..). Most of those guys are quality bloggers, some already high fliers and some just starting out..
Some link back to me, which is great as it’s a you scrub my back, i scrub your back situation and works for everyone.. we both get traffic, an added incoming link etc..
That’s all rosey until i decide to change the content of my blog to porn or offensive stuff Now, i’ll lose links, lose respect and trust and have to meet new bloggers/people. What i’m trying to say is that placing trust in friends, particularly those you barely know, is a dangerous game, but it has to be done in order to extend/develop networks.
It’s the same in real life.. if you call and agree to meet up somewhere with a friend and he doesn’t show, that’s a dud relationship.. respect is lost there as is trust etc.. so you’ll think twice about meeting up again.. or you’ll think twice about relying on him for something, perhaps on a subconscious level…
But at the same time if you never meet up with anyone, you’re never going to add more ‘quality’ friends to your core network.
Networking is something we have to do in order to simply live.. it would be tough to live life without any friends/boyfriends/girlfriends/bosses/workmates etc.. in fact, it would be impossible. We can control how many friends we have, but there’s always that small core of people that you know you’ll go back to because you can trust them and you know them.
The bigger that core, the more successful/happy you will be in my opinion. Just like in the online world, the more active and open you are towards people, the more contacts you will make.