Social Networking tidbits…

As I try to further my understanding of the nuances of the social networking phenomena (and no..its not too late…today Yahoo / News Corp story came out that News Corp may take a stake in yahoo in exchange for My Space)…! 

If these two giant media players are still trying to define the landscape, the average investor/reader/voyueur/media maven can still find time to delve into the motivating factors of consumption, business models, demand from the consumer for some unmet need, etc.

Here are a few facts to preview:

– 55% of online teens have a social network profile (Red Herring, 4.30.07)

– “the market for social networking will be worth $13.1 billion by 2011 compared to just under $3.5 billion in 2006 (Red Herring, 4.16.07)

– Cool sites to review: HeyLetsGo and a site for people with like interests Meetup

 – Blogs that may be of interest to further understand as a social science: Mashable, Swarming Media and Lunch Over IP.

Not sure how other media companies (publishers, etc) use social media to connect its users to each other (many to many relationship) or implement on their sites (change the DNA of a publisher from one to many to a collaborative sharing platform), but each piece of the content/media chain may need to incorporate pieces of social networking as the world becomes ever more connected?

Not stating anything new here…but as ideas are more freely shared via interaction and online publishing at the user generated level and the power of the masses (ie wisdom of the crowds to use an overused term) is harnessed in new and exciting ways (stock predictive tools via MarketWatch or TheFool, “swarming” via mobile, GPS based predictive models a la Mao Networks used to determine user behavior on a large scale), media producers needs to connect through different mechanisms than in the past.  The who and the why seems straight forward ..ie people want a voice.  The what and how are still in evolution. 

Will we all have 1-2 social networks (wrote about this in another posting)….or do the social networks combine in some future evolution..ie Facebook and MySpace each have widgets that can populate on one another’s sites?  Is there an IM/mobile component that uses a Twitter-like app and provides a text/voice application where users can update their profiles 24/7?

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