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Social Services vs. Social Networks

Updated on July 22, 2012
Social Networks
Social Networks

©2009 Dorothy W. Parker All Rights Reserved

I am always amazed at the level of growth and relationship I find on the social networks. It is mind boggling how many people are on those networks every single day, all day long, building new and amazing connections. These social networks are always just a mouse click away, at work, at home, in the car, on the bus, on the plane, across the ocean, there seems to be no barriers. However it is just as mind boggling and amazing how hard it is to build these same types of relationships and connections in physical locations, such as, churches, businesses, social scenes, homes, schools, etc... I am finding the average person on Facebook is looking for one thing that seems to matter above all the other issues they may be facing. Those who join, follow or comment on these social networks want to be heard! I have been a member of FB since the end of last year, however I have been actively functioning on the network for the past 4 to five months I have almost 1,000 friends. I make it my business to read every status update and to respond to every request and to participate in as many networks as possible. However, whether I comment or not, the status updates continue to come, it’s as if the social network has become a virus and taken on a life of its own.

One response can spark a light of joy in the heart of the one responded to. People are eager to thank you, appreciate you, tell you they love, send you virtual gifts. I get rose, gifts, hugs, trips away, all sorts of things come from perfect strangers, who are willing to share with me on a level of intimacy that most people will only feel safe at after at least six months to a year of interaction. What is sparking this love fest, this honey do, this intimacy, is it real, is people genuinely caring and concerned as they appear to be.

I must say yes, I have witnessed fights and rough stuff on these networks, but still the relationships keep right on growing. These relationships are without walls, they have no national, ethical, cultural, or class barriers, on these networks they are all just people, who want to get along and love one another. They just want someone to know they are here and they have a contribution to make.

Why do you think this is happening, why do people have such a need to be heard, and what makes these social networks the best opportunity for those voices to be heard. I must say in addition to wanting to be heard they're looking for someone who recognize their reality and are interested in being a part of it. I realize it may not seem that way if you don’t find these genres of fellowship exciting, but for those of us who do, I find this situation is major. The levels and topics of people's status is equally amazing, the personal touch and levels of openness in sharing is phenomenal. The good mornings, the hellos and the goodnights are so personal. The quick response to those in trouble and in need of prayer or words of encouragement, the ability others have to just simply share love when it seems you are all alone.

People are willing to share their most intimate moments, theirs sicknesses, marriage issues, Job related problem, social issues, spiritual and religious positioning, it is all so amazing to me. Yet when this level of relationship, the quality and the quantity are sought after outside the arena of the internet’s social networking sites it is almost null and void. Sure many of us have our levels of connections and intimacies, but the degree and the intensity is felt on another level on these social networking sites.

I’m wondering if perhaps we are creating a more technical mask than the ones we are use to creating in our lives. Is it the fact that we are not in personal, close contact and therefore we feel a sense of freedom and liberty we otherwise would not feel? Perhaps you can shed more light on this subject. Please leave a comment; it could be the next book! We will continue to add more to this topic!

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