A followup to my post yesterday Social Software -- Problems & the Definition of "Friends", I saw in Scott Lofteness' blog a reference to David Hornick's VentureBlog: Conserving Social Capital:
As social networking software grows more prevalent and an increasing number of people attempt to draw upon our social capital to make introductions, entertain business propositions, pass along resumes, etc., I believe we will all grow more guarded with our time and our relationships. If social capital is indeed capital, we will all soon be more careful about where we spend it and on whom.
Scott also mentions his own experience with Social Software:
I'm finding there's just not much of a "there there" for me. Nothing that draws me back to regular usage. Somehow expanding LinkedIn's view of my network just doesn't get me excited -- like they think it should! There's certainly nothing there I'd be willing to actually pay LinkedIn for!Yet it is interesting that all of us are giving it a real try. There may still be a 'there' there, but if it is, it is currently being obscured.
This obviously isn't a stable situation. Something will likely emerge to make this a more useful service -- a place to spend and share the social capital David talks about -- or it'll eventually just fade away.