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Social networks need to get more social…

Alex Christie

21 November 2008

These days there are social networks for almost anything: From
shopping networks to bars, if more than one person can partake in an activity,
it probably has a social network online. Social

Creating a social network is no further away than a couple
of clicks. Thanks to simple creation software such as Ning, there are literally thousands of little
networking sites abound on the Internet
. 
These user generated social networks obviously don’t generate any direct
income, but the power and allure of these networks comes from the data that
gets shared within them.

From information on new Night Clubs in your area to prices
and recommended destinations in India, the information you receive and the
people you interact with are based on your personal preferences.

Because social networks revolve around personal preferences,
each social network requires its own login information… and this is where
things start to fall apart.

Anyone who has tried to remember more than 5 different
passwords knows how difficult it would be to manage all your accounts
throughout multiple networks.  Then there
is the time spent on creating a new profile for each network you have joined.
This does limit the amount of networks that people join, and I am sure allows
many brilliant social networks to slip past unnoticed.

In a perfect world you need only login to an account once,
create a profile once and have all the benefits of various social networks at
your disposal.

The first step needed to get this setup working, would be
for social networks to integrate with each other.   

They don’t necessarily need to share information, but they
should strive to create a seamless transition between them when a user travels
through these groups. Signing up to a network should consist of nothing more
than an “I accept the terms and conditions of this network” button and a few
minor customization settings.

Imagine a Social networking aggregator and manager, one that
not only manages your contacts and preferences  through all of your accounts on different networks,
but one that also tracks and displays relevant networks that apply to your
profile;  all the while making travel
between these areas a seamless experience.

Website aggregators such as Reddit and Digg have already
proven the basic concept with public pages.

I think the more interaction social networks have with each
other, the more powerful the concept of social interaction becomes and the
richer the experience is.

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