LINKEDIN: Facebook IS completely different than LinkedIn

From a posting on Execunet ( that was tuned up and reposted at the “LinkedIn Discussion Index” blog honchoed by Vincent Wright. Vincent created the genre of LinkedIn spin off groups that allowed an interesting segmentation of the LinkedIn community. Here’s my posting about the differences in different social networking site.

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Facebook IS completely different than LinkedIn

I was much amused by all the Facebook versus LinkedIn discussion recently. As I was with the “religious” quality vs quality qauziness (sic craziness). All courtesy of Vincent’s various creations. Of course, as a big fat old turkey, I have lots of DIKW and a few opinions. I wrote this on a pay site for the networking group there and, as a lazy turkey too, I will repurpose it for my blog. But first I’ll drop it here as my inaugural post. I don’t want to reignite religious wars, but I am trying to make the point that just as there are different tools like a hammer, screw driver, and wrench, that start out with different design goals, humans can use their tools in unexpected ways. I personally have used a hammer to keep a reference book open to a certain page, poke a hole clear with a screw driver, and used a wrench to bang a nail. The hammer was holding the book open that said “put nail here”. (Don’t ask it was a bad day!) But seriously, it all starts with the user’s individual goal, then proceeds thru any number of tools, and finally to the results. If the proverbial nail goes in the right spot, who’s to say that the user was wrong.

So with that caveat, let’s dive into the mind of a big fat old turkey thinking about Facebook, as compared to LinkedIn. Bear in mind, that Facebook here is really a specific instance of other social networking sites such as Friendster, MySpace, and all the what I call “near social networking sites”. You know those sites, where they too are bolting on, after the fact, some aspect of social networking.

Here goes. Jumping into a conversation about Facebook as compared to LinkedIn:

I think you have to approach “networking” on Facebook completely differently than LinkedIn. More social! And much more passively. More timeless. And unstructured.

For example, I’m using it to collect as many “alma mater” networking contacts as I can. By that I mean fellow graduates of “my” school, people from past employers, current fellow employees, industry colleagues, and work / home regional granfalloon type contacts. You then proceed to “infiltrate” the target companies where your target position is likely to exists.

Since Facebook aims at a younger demographic, old far … fogeys like me, need to swim gently, being helpful and very non judgmental.

(Posting one sexuality in their profile was the biggest thing I had to “overlook”. Talk about digital dirt! Who knew that all the “hot chicks” from my stogy Catholic College were gay? Or is that defense mechanism. But some of the pictures are borderline NSFW! Can you believe any of the nonsense posted there? Recommend sunglasses and a large supply of NaCl!)

OK, I’m swimming in that “pool”, and remember I have no specific “networking agenda” in mind. I have helped about a dozen people with job leads and resume help. (Seek first to help, then be helped.) And, for example, in the process have acquired one networking contact at a very low level, who is giving me organization announcements for a company in my geography where I’d have a trivial commute. (I could go home for lunch.) Will any thing come of it? Who knows. I have about 100+ new “friends” and bunch of new “fellow alums”. Does it matter? Too soon to tell.

Remember I measure things in decades. My lesson from the Universe on that was a trivial good deed done to an IBM sales engineer 15 years prior snagged me a great job with him as my boss when I needed it. It taught me the value of timeless chronologies. Not everything you plant gives you veggies in 15 minutes. Americans with the “now” mentality have to learn everything comes to fruition in its own time.

Bottom line, that contact had never heard of LinkedIn, and really doesn’t “do the networking thing”.

So you have to become a chameleon. Data, Information, Knowledge, and Wisdom is where you can find it. Here’s some of my whiz-dumb about Facebook, its difference from LinkedIn, and the need to be “flexible” in each social networking instance.

Do I think that I have the pearls of wisdom about LinkedIn, Facebook, or anything else? Sure I do. Even the big fat old turkey has a big fat ego.

I appreciate a new venue to pontificate from, and that VW is an all “right” fellow. Even though he has too much time on his hands to be creating all these genre busting concepts. Due to him, I personally have had to go to the new paradigm store several times for a meme clean out and reload. Maybe he’s a Microsoft Executive in disguise. You know spend lots of time – money – attention to upgrade a perfectly good operating system, just so you can have a new ribbon and lots of old problems. Yup, Vincent, is one of those good kind of trouble makers. The kind that make you think and act differently.

Now if he could just transform me into one of those kids on Facebook, then he’d be impressive. (I wonder if Frau Reinke, my wife, would approve?)

You are, all, of course, welcome to peruse my various and sundry DIKW entries at my various sites. Or, not as you see fit. I don’t have as many as VW has domain names, but then I’m just a poor turkey. Not one of them there domain en-tray-pren-you-ers.

fwiw ymmv faiwwypfi,
the big fat old turkey hisself

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