Over time Scott & I both have a somewhat spotty record in terms of posting to our blog, in part because it's so much easier to share things in other environments such as ASAE's listserv and acronym. It's certainly where all our friends and competitors in the association world hang out, so I know I haven't ever written much personal here. I do envy friends such as Shelly Alcorn being able to bring much more personality to their posts than certainly I ever do.
But Facebook has morphed into something so much more personal that it's hard to think of it in the same league as a "business tool." Sure, I flag myself as a fan of my friends' companies, but as I look through my list of friends I find people I haven't spoken to in person since junior high and I find myself commenting on notes from people I probably sit next to and do not speak to directly at happy hour at Hard Times Chili, just because they also know my favorite waitress. The analyst in me thinks of the classic social networking diagram that shows the web of contacts we form in any workplace--using the number of contacts we make to establish who's in the loop, who's not, who's a connector, who's influential, and who operates in relative isolation.
Sometimes it really is better to not overthink things. I would have no idea how to craft a message that "works" just as well for my cousins who are ministers in Oregon, high school friends from Idaho who kindly shoot and share images from my hometown, including the house I few up in (above, just behind the farm implement store in tiny New Plymouth Idaho), and the association execs and consultants who are my primary contacts in life today in Washington DC. I guess I'll just write what's on my mind and to enjoy a tool that shrinks the scary outside world into a place where a few hundred of the people who have touched my life over the years "live." I can hear all about their lives, their bad jokes, their children's proms and graduations, and even sometimes still play the smart-aleck teenager I used to be even after the wrinkles and bald spots serve as a constant reminder that I am no longer a puppy. As someone without a family and who primarily works alone today, I appreciate even more the luxury of being able to "speak" to people I never see in person. Even our school reunion in two weeks, the first one I've ever attended, is hard to picture without having something like this to link us together when and how we want to be linked.
Thanks, Facebook! -Kevin (NPHS Class of '82)