It got me thinking about my own interactions I have on-line and what my expectations are about them. The author indicates we are “socialized to thinking that networking is an exchange of value.” I think before the advent of social media that may have been the norm. Interactions were face to face, over the phone or maybe by email. But now many on-line interactions are different and might not necessarily be reciprocal. Just because I follow someone or add them to a circle on Google + doesn’t mean they have to do the same for me.
The posts talks about how great networkers are generous, they help make connections between people that “should” meet without any expectation of social debt. I see twitter as a great way for this interaction to happen. Everyday I see people helping others and putting people in contact with each other with no expectation of anything in return, just a genuine desire to help someone out. We’ve all seen tweets looking for help and either fired off a RT or made a suggestion of who might be able to help. A small side effect might be the odd bump in the followers column but I’m pretty sure that isn’t why people do it.
I think if you were to take a poll the results would show that more and more people on-line have no expectation of social debt and that’s a good thing. So keep interacting and sharing, a simple RT or sharing a connection might be much more powerful than you might think.
Note: Originally posted to www.govlife.ca