If you haven’t had the opportunity to go in and see what Facebook is all about, I recommend you carve some time into your schedule and get up to speed. According to their website, “Facebook is a social utility that helps people communicate more efficiently with their friends, family and coworkers. The company develops technologies that facilitate the sharing of information through the social graph, the digital mapping of people’s real-world social connections.” After giving Facebook a spin for the past week, I have to say that it is a fairly remarkable piece of technology that has some real potential for use by the orchestra field…
At the core of Facebook is the activity of “making friends” which is accomplished by both active and passive means. You can either send invitations to someone to become your friend or wait for others to approach you. Being someone’s friend allows you access to their profile and vise versa.
Although that process sounds straightforward, Facebook attempts to create as many intersections between individuals as possible and the do more than a fiar job at finding connections that you might have otherwise overlooked. One of the more clear-cut methods to finding friends is to upload all of your email addresses and Facebook will go out and find anyone on that list and invite them to be your friend.
Personally, that method crosses an Orwellian line and I would never dream of giving my address book to a third party resource regardless of how much they profess to keep information secure. Fortunately, there are plenty of other ways to run across people you already know or find new friends with similar interests.
The really fun part of Facebook that has potential for this business is the ability to create a variety of custom apps that tie people together via their interest in classical music. Instead of throwing out a few examples, take 15 minutes out of your day at some point this week and create a Facebook account for yourself and go exploring. Keep in mind, unless you want to be a virtual hermit, you’ll have to let others see at least part of your profile at some point so use some common sense: don’t put anything in your profile you wouldn’t want the general public to know.
In the meantime, I’m interested in hearing back from readers to see how they think something like Facebook could serve as a useful tool to not only attract an audience but help them grow into becoming sincere stakeholders in their respective orchestra.
Oh, and if you already have a Facebook profile (or plan on creating one this week) don’t forget to send me an invitation so we can be friends…