I got an email today from Manyworlds that they are adding social networking capabilities to the site. This comes on the heels of MyBlogLog doing the same thing. When I logged in the other day (I use MyBlogLog to check the stats for a few sites), I was prompted to enter a screen name to use for the new social networking aspect of the site. I could not skip it. I had to put something in.
The trouble is that, for the most part, I don't want to network and I don't want to be social. My experience has been that I can typically find the people I need to find when I need to find them. I get a lot of email from this blog, other sites, people I know, people recommended to me by friends and others, and there are only a few dozen people that I correspond with on a semi-regular basis. And even that is too much. But the point is that I don't want to be part of any more social networks.
I don't blame MyBlogLog and Manyworlds for adding them. They are all the rage and, I guess, most people like them. But I don't want to connect with old friends. I don't care what my high school classmates are up to. I want fewer contacts. I don't need another person to pitch me on their MLM scheme because I have labeled "entrepreneurship" as an interest. That is the problem with social networks. Like anything else, they start off well enough and then people exploit them to find sales leads and aggravate people that don't want to be bothered.
So forgive me for not wanting to sign up, but I am not lacking for contacts or social interaction. I am lacking for time. It is the only thing I wish I had more of, and joining another social network just saps more of it away.