For Me, Facebook is Not for Connecting. It’s for Reconnecting.

My early experiences with Facebook were interesting. First, I signed up because (supposedly) you were professionally screwed if you didn’t. Then I got very “meh” about all of the duplicate content and duplicate efforts I was seeing. Status updates were basically tweets I’d already read on Twitter. I found myself basically copying and pasting my profile from LinkedIn over on Facebook. Etc etc etc. Yawn.

Turns out, the problem is that my friends on Facebook were basically my friends on Twitter. So, by the time I checked out Facebook, everything I was seeing was old news.

Time passed, and something happened. More people joined Facebook. And I’m using it more and more.

The people I’m finding on Facebook now are people from high school… people from college… people from old jobs. As it goes more mainstream (and the early, core users probably hate this), more and more people sign up. And those are the folks that weren’t already on Twitter, Flickr, or FriendFeed.

So, suddenly my Facebook news feed is no longer a list of tweets I’ve already read. It’s updates from people I’ve only recently connected with after (sometimes ten) years of silence.

Some Facebook (re)connections:

I know it’s cool for us “open web” advocates to openly complain about Facebook. But you know what? Without it, these people wouldn’t be in my life at all right now.

So, who have you reconnected with?

3 Comments

  1. On February 27th, 2009 at 2:58 pm Peter R. Wood said:

    I’m right with you on this one… for me it’s been an amazing resource for reconnecting with people who I haven’t heard from in years:

    * Kid who was a best friend of mine in grade school but moved away before junior high.
    * Some friends from a youth symphony I was in during my high school years.
    * Other friends from high school and college.

    And it’s also proved to be a great way to connect with my relatives… my father, sister, brother-in-law, aunts, uncles, and cousins all have Facebook accounts, and it’s a great way to share news and updates with them.

    We’re eagerly awaiting the arrival of baby #2 any day now, and one of the biggest differences between #2 and #1 is that we didn’t have Facebook or Twitter when #1 was born… will be interesting to see how things are different when #2 arrives, in terms of communicating about [his|her] arrival. Last time our only outlets were phone, email, and blog… now we can add Twitter and Facebook. Will be interesting to compare response rate… number of comments we received on our blog when #1 was born vs # of comments/replies we get when we announce that #2 is born.

  2. On March 4th, 2009 at 12:19 pm Sara Streeter said:

    For me Facebook helps me keep in touch with my West Coast family – I keep current on what my aunt and cousin are up to lately. They see my pics and comment, which is way more interaction than we had for years.

    I have totally reconnected with people on Facebook, and I’m sure it helps especially when you have moved away from where you grew up. Fortunately for me, I live in the same place where I grew up so the people I knew way back when are still hanging around. Especially in Rhode Island you often seem to run into people whose sisters were in the same grade as you ;)

  3. On March 21st, 2009 at 12:03 pm Giles Crouch (Webconomist) said:

    So true…and isn’t it interesting that for the first time in human history we are able to easily connect with people from our past who have dispersed in this more mobile society? Our sense of community is altered or altering…how will such historical connections change entertainment and societal growth?