Week 5: Online Networks/Real Life Networks

Thing 6: Online networks

I think it’s great that we are able to network online! It helps us share what we know and are good at, it helps us to learn and stay up to date, and it helps us connect with other professionals and see we are not alone.
I am in touch with so many people online who I would have never met in real life (and maybe never will). I talk to people in Australia, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA and the UK on a near-daily basis. They help me stay sane and they help me realise what I can do better in my working life. Some of them have become friends.

I am on LinkedIn and Facebook; and I count twitter as online networking tool as well. I follow LISNPN on twitter but I don’t really engage with them.

I don’t use the groups on LinkedIn enough. I am a member of a few groups but I don’t often participate in discussions. I have attended a workshop on LinkedIn in the past, so my profile is quite good (I think). I don’t have as many connections on there as I have on Facebook but maybe it’ll spread. Especially if Facebook keeps changing their privacy settings and people get fed up with it. 

I maintain a Facebook page for work, which is the main reason I’m still on Facebook, just because it’s easier to be contactable and post/administrate from my own profile rather than a generic group one.

When I first joined Facebook I used it in a personal capacity but in the the last few years it has become a professional tool for me (after dropping it for a few weeks when I got annoyed with it). For a while I had two profiles to keep personal and professional life apart but there were too many overlaps and it just became too much hassle. So I dropped the personal profile and friends who don’t work in libraryland just have to put up with it. I don’t update it much anyway, as I don’t feel I want to share ever single thing. Normally I update both Facebook and LinkedIn with the same information at the same time. I mostly use both as address and mail facilities, and both have different people on it (some overlapping again).

I might give LISNPN a go and sign up later this week. I never considered joining but maybe now is a good time.

My online networking behaviour at the moment is that I connect with people on twitter and then move on from there. If we get on on twitter I often give them my details and ask them to add me to their Facebook or LinkedIn, for more in-depth conversations and to have them in my address book. That works for me, as it’s quick and easy, and I don’t have to share too much information about myself too early. Twitter is the perfect tool for sharing, keeping up to date and quickness. And it’s not all formal and dull either.

Drop me a comment or message to connect. 🙂

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3 Responses to Week 5: Online Networks/Real Life Networks

  1. Helen says:

    Really interesting that you understand how you use the networks, by which I mean the order in which you navigate between them and how you make contacts. Starting with Twitter does seem to be eminently sensible as it seems (and cpd23 is confirming) that those who are very, very active in a professional capacity through online networks are also those who are regular Twitter users. And as Twitter is a great vehicle for the “profersonal”, to steal Jo’s expression, it’s a good way to get a clearer idea of people’s interests and personalities.

    • bumsonseats says:

      Thanks for your comment, Helen. I always worry that I overthink but in this context it’s really helped me reflect on what I do in reagrds to networking. I also think with time I’ll become more brave (as I have already). Everyone has been really encouraging so far, so my eventual/possible “coming out” feels less scary. 🙂

  2. Pingback: Thing 6: Online networks | Growing a library

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