My Facebook is personal. My Twitter is professional. My LinkedIn is uber-professional. In recent months, those neat little social networking boxes are overflowing and mixing with each other. I’ve had a network collision. Granted, I’m the one who created those boxes in the first place, so any fault is my own. Initially, separating those spaces made sense and worked quite well, but recent projects and friendships are teaching me not to box myself in. As I mentioned in my SBPS essay, many of my PLN members have moved from distant mentors to trusted friends. Yet I continue to use Twitter to interact with them regularly- it’s an organic growth of a relationship in the ground in which it sprouted and grew. Rather like a little plant, uprooting our online relationships can be traumatic. So, most of us leave them…. and grow into new spaces with our friends as well.
I’ve recently started working with Monika Hardy @monk51295 and the Innovation Lab she facilitates in our District. Those students network best through Facebook, and so she has gone where the teens are… and has brought the rest of us along with her! And more recently, Shelly Terrell @shellterrell announced that The 30 Goals project #30goals would have a Facebook page. More collisions.
Since I want to participate in these things, I’m packing away the boxes. I’m going to reconsider linking my blog posts back to Facebook via FacePress so that I share there as well as on Twitter.
Are your online networks blending like mine? How are you handling the introduction of your PLN to spaces like Facebook? Will it change how you use the tool in the future?