Saturday, November 05, 2011

Har ek social network zaroori hota hai

Google 'revamped' Google Reader this week, which reduced the sharing functionality among friends. This was clearly monopolistic cross-selling strategy used by Google to promote its Google Plus, which I think is floundering just like its predecessor, Wave. Thus, this 'Evil' act by Google has caused quite an outrage among users of Reader. With so many social networks around, why do we need Reader at all? But 'har ek social network zaroori hota hai'!

Let me start with Google Reader. It was (I am using 'was' and not 'is' because I don't believe its new form is 'Reader') a RSS Reader, but with additional functionality of sharing the articles among friends on Google. The best part about this sharing was that it was restricted to articles. So in my friend stream of Google Reader, I would have few discerning readers, who would share great articles and of course comment/ discuss. There is no clutter of status updates, photos n all. It's for sheer reading pleasure. And of course you would have some friends who would share cartoons, some Indian bloggers and some sheer random but very interesting stuff. If an article from newspaper or website is worth sharing, most likely I would share on Reader, because I knew that other users would value it. Now with friends' stream gone I hardly go to Reader. I hope Google would restore the original Reader. (BTW I am 'hoping' for Google to do something? Haven't I been left to whims and fancies of Google management? It's becoming Evil indeed! Scary!)

Then comes another from Google, Buzz! Well only reason I continue to use buzz is because of the button just below my inbox. It's easy to reach, people often share Reader articles, Twitter statuses, etc. on Buzz. So kind of good aggregator of various media. Just an output medium, as I hardly ever posted on Buzz. Mainly extension of Reader, with more clutter.

After Reader has ceased to provide friend stream, my article sharing would mostly happen on Twitter. It's easy to share on Twitter with short comment and by selecting whom you follow carefully, you can control quality of posts. I think twitter would become de facto sharing site for me after sad demise of Reader.

And the most famous and powerful Facebook. Personally I find it too much cluttered. Why would I be bothered about some random acquaintance travelling to Timbuktu or random games some people play. I know we can weed out these posts. But then it becomes too chaotic and difficult to control what's appearing on the wall. And that's why I find it very intrusive social network.

Linked in is again for professional network, where you would go for serious stuff. Whatsapp has been real fun for casual chat (especially group chat) on the go.

That's why I believe each social network has a purpose. If I need to read some quality stuff, I would go to Reader; if I want quick glance at news or witty comments (and increasingly shared articles going forward) I would check Twitter. And if I want random stuff I would go to Facebook basically for spending time. I know that Facebook is trying to be one stop shop for all these purposes, I believe it's good to have different networking site for all these purposes, because it would be better than succumbing to Facebook-poly.

Wouldn't you prefer different friends for different reasons, rather than having one messiah? Aakhir har ek social network zaroori hota hai...

1. I didn't discuss Google Plus, because I hope it would die its natural death just like Wave did
2. I was wondering what is 'purpose' of this blog and where should I share it? But since it mentions all the social networking sites, I thought it would be better to share on all :P


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