One reason I dislike TV news is that it's insipid and superficial. There, I said it. And even my non-insipid non-superficial friend from Information Week, Mitch Wagner, couldn't do much about the lousy teeny bit of time he was given in his interview on Fox news.
But he was well spoken, personable as always, and gave them the information in sound bite sized pieces which TV loves. He also gave us a little sanity and an overview of information and assured the fox folks that social networking was not just for kids.
It would have been great to have Mitch for about a 2 hour sit down about relationships in a connected age not a 2 minute pit stop before they went on to talk about Britney or something equally deep and meaningful. But he did get me thinking about where others participate online
My list is long and my excuse is that I have to know something about them if I'm going to explain to people what they're about. A small widget to link to these services is something I find handy and I place it in the blogs' side columns so that you'll know where to find me.
In addition I set up other services to aggregate some of the content of the sites - which in reality nobody but a stalker would want to keep up with. I use a few services like profilactic and to a less complete degree perhaps, onaswarm. Onaswarm even includes my twitter tweetings which can be prolific and overrun everything else and so maybe should be removed for sanity sake.
For the record, I'd like to see all the material appear at Onaswarm in a timeline instead of divided by social networks but just putting it all together is some kind of magic for me so I'll go with it.
In any case, by going to their site you can get an overall view of what your friends are doing, reading, bookmarking, uploading. Sounds kind of creepy now that I say it that way, but that's what it does so there it is.
With one exception that is. Because of facebook's setup not much if any facebook content comes through to outside. Aggregators simply give a link to find your contact at facebook or linkedin by signing in and going through the process of asking if you can connect and thus see the what they share there.
Another service, soup.io adds whatever content I want them to automatically collect each day like clips from all of my blogs, my youtube videos, anything I might add to del.icio.us, tumblr and flickr account. It also allows me to manually - and very simply - add images, articles, quotes or links I find along the way and want to show someone or keep for reference.
This clip shown here shows the top of my front page including little icons for various feeds I have coming in and a picture of a woopie pie. After a trip to Lancaster PA a twitter discussion started about food that some others were unfamiliar with. I added this and then sent twitter friends here where they can see not only the photo but a recipe and a story about the writer's PA heritage. Nice and easy.
Do I need all these networks, aggregators, link magnets, ways of staying in touch especially since I'm a bit of a hermit anyhow? Who knows, but for now I've got them and I'm learning about their limitations and potential.
But that gets us no closer to the question I started out with: What networks do you participate in and how do you let people know who you are and where you are? My take is that this staying in touch thing could be a full time job, even with technology working for me.
Here's my "badge" or widget from profilactic, just to give you an idea. Oy!