Farmers Weekly guide to social networking

Bit bored? Fancy meeting some new friends? Well why don’t you join the new social revolution. Go on the internet.

Now I know this may sound a little odd. Making friends through a computer? Surely that’s the most anti-social thing you could do, just sitting there in front of the screen, instead of being in the pub with your favourite pint of mild and your mates.

But bear with me. With the heavy workload of farming making a satisfying social life more difficult than ever, maybe social networking is the answer, allowing you to meet new, like-minded people.

In the past, conversing on the internet has been perceived as a bit of a seedy affair for those wanting extra-marital encounters or the latest news on Star Trek. Things are beginning to change, however, with a massive upturn recently of “social communities”.

Myspace, Bebo, Friendster and Facebook may sound like nicknames for Top Gun characters, but they form the basis for the new explosion of social networking sites.

Communicate

These sites allow you to meet like-minded people and communicate with old friends, creating a community. It is just like being down the pub – apart from there’s no alcohol, and no crazy bloke called Dave falling over chairs at closing time.

You create your own personality profile, filling in your interests and hobbies while putting up pictures of yourself. You can then find existing friends while waiting for new acquaintances to get in contact.

After you have found friends you can rank them into some order (usually in order of who looks the prettiest to attract more friends). You can then share crazy pictures, recommend new bands or film clips you may like, and send messages to each other on what you have planned for tomorrow, or conversely what you have done during the day.

How to be Farmers Weekly friend
  • For Myspace, you need to create your own account and search for Farmers Weekly. Alternatively, type in www.myspace.com/thefarmersweekly to take a look at the site and ask to be our friend
  • For Facebook, you have to create an account before you can browse. Do this at www.facebook.com and search for Farmers Weekly and request to be a friend
The greatest potential of these sites, however, is in the sense of community that you can create. Facebook, for example, allows you to create groups of people who can share college allegiances or farming beliefs, or even favourite films.

From this, the rowing club can organise its next social, the birdwatching group can share pictures of nice lookers (birds, that is), or the group “why the north is better than the south” can share thoughts on why – or if – that is indeed the case.

Using this simple idea of profiles and community sharing, sites such as Myspace and Facebook now have literally millions of subscribers, each site continuing to grow hourly.

If you’re still unsure, preferring meeting face-to-face, then fair enough. But if you have a spare 10 minutes why not give it a go?

And if you can’t find any friends, come and find Farmers Weekly on Myspace and Facebook and we will be your number one friend.

OTHER SITES WORTH CHECKING OUT
  • www.myspace.com Myspace allows you to create your own individual looking profiles and is famous for allowing music makers to profile their songs
  • www.facebook.com Facebook is popular among students, allowing picture sharing as well as the creation of groups – from college societies to specific farming groups
  • www.flickr.com Flickr is a dedicated photo-sharing site that allows users to judge each others photos, collect them into groups and rate other photos in terms of “interestingness”
  • www.friendsreunited.co.uk Friends Reunited is one of the original social networking sites, that allows users to find past school and college friends to find out what they are doing now
  • www.secondlife.com Second Life allows members to enter a virtual community with virtual businesses and a virtual currency – the linden dollar


 

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