I’m now “LinkedIn” to one million connections now what?

I just logged into LinkedIn to find out that I’m now connected and somehow linked to one million people. What does that mean? Is there value in having “access” to these people? I certainly can’t call all of these people my friends. After hitting one million LinkedIn connections, it’s making me think about all the social network sites that I’m on and how all of them a common element, a quantitative measurement.

Facebook has total number of friends. Facebook has fan and group pages where people set up groups with goals of seeing how many people will join. Some groups openly state “I want to see how long it takes to get one million people to join”. There’s six degree of separation groups. There’s studies that show we’re all six degrees away from having a online conversation with Kevin Bacon.

Twitter keeps track of people that you’re following, how many people are following you, how many updates you have made. I look at some people’s numbers like the “Scobleizer” and he is following 21,000 people and being followed by over 32,000 people. 32,000 people, good grief, that’s equivalent to nearly 70% of the population of Redmond, WA following his tweets. You just got to wonder how that makes him feel knowing each time he posts a tweet he’s got all those people listening. He could almost start charging money to advertisers that want him to say something about their company.

Biznik, a business social networking site also has activity metrics. They have some algorithm that measure things like number of referrals, message posts, comments, events attended and hosted, all these things add up to how high you show up on the member page. You’ve got to be mad dog active to show up on the first page and people seem to be jocking for position to stay there. If Biznik showed each member how many points they had, it would be even more crazy as people would be trying to earn as many points as possible to pass others up and get on the first page which would give their company more exposure.

Plurk has Karma points. You are shown your Karma points and it goes up and down based on how active you are, how many people you invite to join, how many plurks you write and how many people respond to your plurks. I’ve been on Plurk for a month now and there have been periods where I’m so busy that I just don’t have to plurk. When I do find time to log in and plurk, I find that I’ve lost a ton of karma points. I end up working hard to get those points back up because it sucks to lose your karma.

Basically everyone of these social networking sites has something that keeps you coming back. I think these sites are striking a nerve with everyone. Am I the only one thinking that this like some kind of fantasy sports game only it’s about real people and everyone is trying to amass huge quantities of people points?

14 replies
  1. Dan McComb
    Dan McComb says:

    I read a great article a few days ago where the author, Terry Brock, was giving advice on business principles that have worked throughout the centuries. He points out that “social networking is a logical extension of the human desire to be with people.” That really resonated with me, and I think that’s a thread that runs through all of the sites you reviewed. The sites strike a nerve because they model online (and to a greater or lesser degree encourage and make more efficient) our desire to be with people.

    Reply
  2. Dan McComb
    Dan McComb says:

    I read a great article a few days ago where the author, Terry Brock, was giving advice on business principles that have worked throughout the centuries. He points out that “social networking is a logical extension of the human desire to be with people.” That really resonated with me, and I think that’s a thread that runs through all of the sites you reviewed. The sites strike a nerve because they model online (and to a greater or lesser degree encourage and make more efficient) our desire to be with people.

    Reply
  3. Peter Chee
    Peter Chee says:

    Thanks for the link to the article Dan. I liked the article and the quote “…how technology changes, but human nature stays the same. This is profound.” That’s so true. I think the social media sites that survive and thrive are the one’s that truly allow people to make meaningful connections.

    Reply
  4. Peter Chee
    Peter Chee says:

    Thanks for the link to the article Dan. I liked the article and the quote “…how technology changes, but human nature stays the same. This is profound.” That’s so true. I think the social media sites that survive and thrive are the one’s that truly allow people to make meaningful connections.

    Reply
  5. Joe "The Hair Farmer" Kennedy
    Joe "The Hair Farmer" Kennedy says:

    I just checked Pete, and I’m connected to over 6.5 million people on Linked In, but I don’t spend a lot of time on it. I do know that people have had success finding jobs – or quality employees – and in getting expert advice and opinions.

    Not so much into FaceBook or MySpace, but do have profiles. Recently starting to tweet a lot more after I found that it is another way I can connect with more people and businesses on the Eastside.

    In my opinion, it’s not points that matter, its the people I can help and the connections I am able to make.

    Reply
  6. Joe "The Hair Farmer" Kennedy
    Joe "The Hair Farmer" Kennedy says:

    I just checked Pete, and I’m connected to over 6.5 million people on Linked In, but I don’t spend a lot of time on it. I do know that people have had success finding jobs – or quality employees – and in getting expert advice and opinions.

    Not so much into FaceBook or MySpace, but do have profiles. Recently starting to tweet a lot more after I found that it is another way I can connect with more people and businesses on the Eastside.

    In my opinion, it’s not points that matter, its the people I can help and the connections I am able to make.

    Reply
  7. Peter Chee
    Peter Chee says:

    Joe, to me, LinkedIn feels like an extension of one’s resume or an online rolodex. I have an account, I get a few invites to be LinkedIn each week and that’s about the only reason why I ever go to that site.

    FB is pretty fun and seems great for “real” friends and family. I don’t do MySpace.

    Twitter is pretty cool, I’ve met some people that share similar interests and see a lot of value in using that.

    Reply
  8. Peter Chee
    Peter Chee says:

    Joe, to me, LinkedIn feels like an extension of one’s resume or an online rolodex. I have an account, I get a few invites to be LinkedIn each week and that’s about the only reason why I ever go to that site.

    FB is pretty fun and seems great for “real” friends and family. I don’t do MySpace.

    Twitter is pretty cool, I’ve met some people that share similar interests and see a lot of value in using that.

    Reply
  9. Rebecca
    Rebecca says:

    I like Facebook – not for business, but to keep in touch with Friends. Twitter has been a lot more fun lately because it seems as though I”m getting quite a bit of traffic according to Google Analytics- and I have no clue how or why. But I just keep on “Twitting”. I still don’t get plurk, Biznet or LinkedIn. If I had more time to delve into them, I’m sure I’d get it. The trouble is – signing up to so many sites and not having sufficient time to keep up with them! AHH!

    Reply
  10. Rebecca
    Rebecca says:

    I like Facebook – not for business, but to keep in touch with Friends. Twitter has been a lot more fun lately because it seems as though I”m getting quite a bit of traffic according to Google Analytics- and I have no clue how or why. But I just keep on “Twitting”. I still don’t get plurk, Biznet or LinkedIn. If I had more time to delve into them, I’m sure I’d get it. The trouble is – signing up to so many sites and not having sufficient time to keep up with them! AHH!

    Reply
  11. Amy Woidtke
    Amy Woidtke says:

    As an indie biz gal, I don’t have time to do all these social sites. I’m on them but my focus goes to Biznik, as that is the only one that has ever garnered me any results, in terms of business and I have to say, it is a main source of business socializing for me, as well as networking and learning for my business.

    And I’m looking at how to operate with less stress and chaos….I can’t imagine adding any more social networks! Eesh!

    Reply
  12. Amy Woidtke
    Amy Woidtke says:

    As an indie biz gal, I don’t have time to do all these social sites. I’m on them but my focus goes to Biznik, as that is the only one that has ever garnered me any results, in terms of business and I have to say, it is a main source of business socializing for me, as well as networking and learning for my business.

    And I’m looking at how to operate with less stress and chaos….I can’t imagine adding any more social networks! Eesh!

    Reply

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