Connecting individuals via friends, relatives, and aquaintances with collaboration, moderation and some form of administration. Social networking typically involves the decentralized distribution of un-authenticated personal information. These networks then branch out and allow friends to connect with people inside their accepted social circle, allowing for a greater sense of security instead of speaking with some anonymous, random person. This is assumed to exploit existing social capital and (more controversially) create new social network connections that never previously existed.
This type of social interaction on the Internet is a logical extension of the blog and Instant Messaging phenomenons: blogs allow for a more community of personal inquiry and thought while IM systems allow for only accepted users to chat.
Many users of these systems chose friends quickly, based on whoever messages them. But it is encouraged that users select only people they know and trust so that the social network has an authority level. Later versions of social networking software may include this "trust them with my children" or "not with a ten foot pole" analysis.
- Friendster - a Web site that users go to. (Wikipedia)
- Huminity - a downloadable client that requires less work by the server. This allows them to handle growth better than Friendster but also not cross-platform, available only for Windows.
- Orkut - Owned by Google, 1.3 million users, has discussion boards on most subjects.
- BeWelcome - a new very active hospitality exchange network democratic and volunteers orientated hospitality exchange
- HospitalityClub - the biggest internet community for hospitality exchange (Wikipedia)
The following links are taken from NotFriendster.com, a list of tools similar to the popular Friendster, notfriendster's list is not being updates. A more comprehensive list is at thesocialsoftwareweblog
- Everyone's Connected
- Tribe - A hybrid between Friendster and Craigslist
- Peepsnation - Online community extended to mobile phones
- Friends of Friends
- WhizSpark - Friendster meets E-vite
- Hi5 - Used to be "sona.com"
- BlogPod - Tribe meets mood ring?
- Plink - FOAF experiment?
- Friendity - Friendster, German-style
Here are a few business networking communities. Some of these have developed some degree of socializing.
These are a couple of spoof sites that have sprung up recently: