As someone engaged daily in social media, I feel like I am completely up-to-date on breaking news, world news, upcoming trends, celebrity gossip and most importantly what is going on in my “friends’” lives.

Before there were fan pages, groups, marketplaces and applications, I began reconnecting with former classmates both from elementary and high school. At this time, “friendship” was what Facebook was all about.

But this weekend, as I was enjoying a slice from my favorite pizzeria, I came to a crossroad on answering the question, what is the true value of Facebook? Sitting in the booth next to me at Dewey’s was an old classmate from high school. Although I inferred the man she was sitting with is her new fiancée, the rock on her hand is as large as it is in her Facebook photos, and that the reason she was out having dinner could be because she was celebrating her recent graduation from nursing school, we couldn’t muster up the nerve to turn to each other and simply say hi. I know intimate details about this girl as it is relayed to me through her facebook profile, photo posts and twitter feeds, but the awkwardness of not seeing each other in 10 years made it very uncomfortable to speak face to face.

So here are a few questions I’m lacking an answer for: Are social media websites encouraging the development of relationships? Do online relationships not translate into the real world? Am I wasting my time reconnecting with people from the past (will there be a benefit in the future)? Or should I just simply use Facebook to develop current real-time relationships and connect with businesses?

As Facebook is constantly redeveloping and changing, so are my opinions and applications. Is anyone else seeing this trend?

Posted by: Amy Jones, Account Manager, 5.10.10

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