Let’s make talk small.

14 August 2007

I’ve written before about the online identity crisis I perceive we are having. A lot of people tell me that they are not so positive about having a unified social network because it would give away too much about them. I guess it really is just human nature for us to disclose ourselves to different people with varying levels of openness.

The problem is that doing this online is so much harder than doing it offline. On the Internet we are suddenly faced with an audience a couple of magnitudes bigger. And the thing is, we suddenly have a lot of audiences for every aspect of us. There are people who read your blog for your punditry, people who read you for your little day-to-day stories, people who only want to talk shop, people who want to talk about that latest online game, etc. We can resolve to splitting our online personas and have multiple blogs and presences (like Pownce, Jaiku, Twitter, blah) or we can mash it all up. Either way, we have a dissatisfied audience.

Naked Biff has a solution he calls Open Messaging. He says

Open messaging would allow you to communicate with a targeted audience in a dedicated space created for the occasion, based on what you want to share. The effort of maintaining an online presence to draw people into a conversation disappears

I agree. I haven’t seen anything like this being done on a personal level yet. Naked Biff says they’re working on something. As for me, I think a TechMeme + Technorati + MyBlogLog solution is a good step forward. This allows us to see what is being talked about and imagine the people involved into a community. Amidst all the noise in the blogosphere/web, this allows us to see conversations clearly and “draws” us to them.