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Business Networking/social networking sites

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Question
Dear Mr. Merrick,
  My name is Diana and I am currently doing an essay on social networking sites. My question is, are social networking sites good for our society? I was wondering what is your view on this? Are social networking sites the blame to cyber-bullying, increased procrastination, and less face-to-face contact with people? People have said that these sites are invading one's privacy and are open to predators. Though on the other-hand, social networking have made beneficial effects on society, such as the quick gain in information/news, improved relationships, and the connectivity around the world.

Answer
Hi Diana,

Great questions! Are social networking sites good for our society? In my opinion it doesn't really matter. Social networking sites are here to stay whether we like it or not. Like the Internet itself, online social networking has changed how we interact within our society and around the world. Online social networking has changed how merchants interact with consumers, how politicians run their campaigns and how singles find dates.   

Social networking sites have created new ways to communicate and interact with people that users may not otherwise have ever had the opportunity to do. At the same time these sites have offered bullies, predators and thieves new ways to perpetrate their behavior. However, progress is never without risk. The invention of the telephone created the same threats.

I believe the more relevant question moving forward is not wether or not social networking sites are good or bad, but how to effectively teach people how to safely use these sites and the online tools they offer to communicate and interact in a positive manner.

I hope this helps.

Best of luck with your essay.

Jim  

Business Networking

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Jim Merrick

Expertise

I can answer questions related to: referral marketing, viral expansion loops, internet marketing and business networking techniques as they specifically relate to growing your business and increasing your profits. I cannot answer specific questions related to: traditional business advertising, networking theory or marketing theory.

Experience

I have years of experience running small businesses; some very successful and some not so successful. My personal experience in business and business networking and very specifically my experience as owner of a business providing support services to other small businesses led me to create "The Consumer Advocate Network". The Consumer Advocate Network is association of people and businesses dedicated to customer service and consumer protection founded on the basic principles of "networking" and why it works.

Organizations
Chamber of Commerce

Education/Credentials
Bachelors degree in Aeronautical Science, Associate degree in business.

Awards and Honors
Runner Up - Small Business of the Year 2006 Tampa Florida

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