So we're all on facebook, most of us are on twitter, a lot of us used and lost patience with Myspace.
Most of us have heard of bebo, Flickr, mylife, last.fm, etc, etc, etc.
There are literally 1000s of these types of sites all over the internet.
But why are they there?
What purpose do they serve?
Why do so many millions of people use them every minute of every hour of every day ?
Is it the need to feel "loved" and/or "wanted" ?
Or is it boredom ?
Do you really know your 3000ish "friends" on facebook ?
Has the whole world become lazy or is it a lot easier to communicate via a social network than it is to actually phone somebody and have a conversation?
There are a lot of questions here, but sadly not a lot of answers. I suggest the answers are very different for very many different people.
A lot of people think I'm addicted to Facebook, this may be true as I do post a lot on there but, I could and have lived without it. Is it my feeling of self importance that I tell people I'm on a train journey to Bristol or is it the boredom of being on the train that leads me to hopefully waste 20 seconds posting an update to Facebook?
The answer lays somewhere in the middle of the 2...
Twitter, I find is a great source of news and information, more so than any newspaper than I could read. I "follow" very many people from presenters on Talksport to Sun Journos, to Daily Mail journos to BBC news presenters to Sky sports presenters to Andrew Neil, with "real" people dotted around too.
Between all these people I tend to find I get all the news I need and all within 140 characters!!!
How did we survive 20 years ago for example, before the birth of most of these types of sites? What did we do before the internet, mobile phones, never mind a "smart" phone with mobile internet !?!
This is going to take a little bit of thought I think.
Perhaps I may have some answers in Part 2, then again perhaps I may have more questions...