De-friending on social networks

Charlene Li gives us her prediction on exclusive social networks in 2009

Entrepreneur interview by Mark Evans
January 25, 2009 | last edited January 25, 2009 8:44 PM | Comments (3)
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In 2009, "trying to grow your network as big as possible is going to be so 2008," predicted Charlene Li, founder of Altimeter.

Since online social networks became mainstream around 2006 and well into last year, member focus has been on "friending" everyone, getting followers and being accessible. This year, that will change, as users will want exclusivity, Li forecasted. Essentially, users will want quality rather than quantity.

In this Social Media Minute interview, Li predicted that 2009 will be the year in which users will create exclusive circles of friends, and the creation of tools that allow users to create special feeds, photos, etc.. for these friends. 

(Note: Be sure to catch Li's upcoming show series on VatorNews, called "Socialize This")


brian fowler, on January 26, 2009

I couldn't agree more. Connecting to any and everyone with no subgroups loses so much of the value of social networking. I'd like to segment my connections, too - no more 'worlds colliding!'.

Mark Evans
Mark Evans, on January 30, 2009

Hi, Arjun:

Thanks for your comment on Charlene's interview. I agree about the noise and am sorry... almost didn't post this story because of it. On the interview, yes, it '09 may still be too early for significant de-friending actions. However, I believe we'll start to see emergence of many friend filters, i.e. similar to Friendfeed but more granular.

Mike Most
Mike Most, on February 20, 2009

I completely agree. The concept of "friending" someone is not as it should be. But social networking is about um "networking" and the point of being on LinkedIn for example is to network. As Facebook offers filters and groupings of contacts we are essentially in need across all social networks the concept of "Contacts" to be re instituted with the ability to categorize these groups of known or "wanting to be known" individuals and then based on "friends" "family" "colleague" "connection".

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