Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Ning & Facebook and other "Interest" networking opportunities.

For most of my life starting in college and especially during this first decade of the twenty first century I have become extremely interested in the concept of interest and community online networking concepts. As a result I have experimented with hundreds of different interest networking projects including dozens of list serves, Yahoo, Google and Apple groups, MySpace, LinkedIn, FriendFeed and many others. I am still active in many of these networks. Like millions of others I am also currently participating in the increasingly popular "Social Networking opportunities like " FaceBook and Twitter. I have found that I can post references to to my blog posts at one time on many of these by using Ping.fm.

My own ideas about why people join these new Social Networking projects is that these are promoted as a way of finding and communicating with "Friends" who have common interests. I am most interested now in how these network projects can help people find others who have common interests in "Place Based" environmental and ecosystem issues. The most interesting networking platform I have found to date that provides more specific interest capability is provided by Ning.com. Marc Andreeson, original founder of Netscape, is a cofounder and describes Ning as a "Next" generation of networking services compared to "Walled Services" like Facebook and MySpace. One aspect of this next generation and of future networking options is open collaborative sharing between networks. Google has created a project called Open Social which starts to address this issue and Ning is participating in this initiative.

Today I came across an interesting blog post titled "Facebook + Ning for Social Change" on the My Social Actions Blog. The article lays out "three scenarios for how your social change initiative can combine the critical mass of Facebook with the community-building tools of Ning.
For anyone following the evolution of social media for social change, the emergence of Facebook and Ning as complementary tools for engaging people in making a difference is quite exciting."

In this blog post I want to share links to some examples of specialized Ning Networking projects I have been involved in helping to produce. Any person or small group with a common environmental interest can start a similar project which is extremely customizable to coincide with the needs of the participants who join.

GeoWeb Common Adventure Network
Idaho Outdoor Photography Network
Idaho Common Adventure Network
Idaho Environmental Network
Idaho Environmental Summit Planning -2008- Network
Jamaica Protected Areas Network
Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe Water Quality Network
Idaho Weed Awareness Campaign Network

If there are any questions or comments from readers I would be happy to try to respond.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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