Social networks are not for me. Sure, I got a profile on several social network sites, but I rarely use it for social networking. I use Last.fm to keep track of what I listen to and because I ? data like that; I use Flickr to share photos and I Twitter a lot.
Among those three, Twitter is the only one where I regularly interact with other users. And that’s because to me, it’s got a very low threshold: where other platforms require ‘friendships’ to be mutual, Twitter’s following-philosophy is entirely one way. I follow people because I know them, because I’m interested in what they’re doing, or just because they got interesting things to say. And, in a way, I see Twitter as an extension to my website. I used to collect links and post a linkdump every now and then, now I shoot a tweet right away. Whenever I got a thought that doesn’t seem worthy of a whole post, I dump it on Twitter. And like on my website, I don’t care who reads it.
One of the reasons why I deleted my Hyves-profile earlier this year is that apart from connecting with friends, it serves no purpose when you already have a website. Same goes for MySpace (when you’re not a musician, and even when you are, MySpace shouldn’t replace a proper website), same goes for Facebook and what-have-you. When I need to get in touch with someone, I’d rather send an email than use some convoluted direct message service that sends a mail saying I got a new message. If people want to get in touch with me, all they have to do is google me. It’s not as if I’m particularly hard to find, and an email address is listed in the colophon.