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end the social

My apologizes, as this is going to be a bit of a rant, but I need to scream.

I've had it with social networks. Since starting this new job I've been asked to sign up with Facebook, which I did begrudgingly. Then a friend of mine asked me to sign up with iLike, a lastfm for iTunes. And I realized, I've had enough. I'm tired of signing up for yet another service.

Between Flickr, Myspace (which I refuse to be on), Friendster, Vimeo, LinkedIn, Facebook, lastfm, 8apps (and I'm sure scores of others) I am done. Plus there are sites like threadless, that desire to be like social networks, but are just glorified communities. This to me keeps being one more password to remember, one more address to check, and their values as forms of communication is continuing to decline.

I need a social network for my social networks. I know there are Ajax based start page solutions that also add news and such, but thats too complex for me. Apple's success on the iPod wasn't it's ability to make toast as well. It was doing one thing really really well and simple. I want a site, that I can hit once a day (or more if my addiction requires) and see in one view all my contacts and what they've updated where. That gives me the ability to find that contact on other services easily, without having to email the contact 10 times to different profiles.

Upscoop looks promising, it searches your gmail database and then searches various networks (they don't publish a list of the networks they support) and if the email addresses match, they link you to your contacts page. You can't however get a live view of their content, so you're still clicking over to flickr or whatever. You can't add them to your network without understandably going through the normal channels, but I think unity is needed if these are going to last. Maybe it can be based on OpenID - i don't know, but it has to stop.

I'm burnt out, and I know I'm not alone.

(*title dig at zune's campaign is intentional)

Comments (6)

John:

YO, hang in there bro! 2 DAYS and then you get to do some real face to face social networking... Either passed out in a puddle on Bourbon or in the NO jail!

John:

Now I'm gonna go find you on Facebook so I can send you a friend request.

dave:

I completely agree. The thing I hate the most is having multiple inboxes to check...I just don't even reply to anything non-gmail anymore.

jk:

Neil I'm totally 100% with you.
I'm going to unplug completely for a couple weeks this summmer.

jk:

Social Networks for social networks:
http://www.loopster.com/
http://www.profilelinker.com/
http://www.spokeo.com/
http://www.iceflake.com/
http://www.profilactic.com/

... now we'll need a meta-social-network-social-network to manage our social-network network.

neil epstein ?:

i hope spokeo wins on purtyness alone.

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Neil Epstein is a designer in new york city. He can be reached .
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