5/08/2009

When I am King: Reconnections

When I am King...

Renewing old acquaintances will be much more efficient.

Through the wonders of social networking sites like FaceBook and LinkedIn, we now reconnect with old friends in a way that was never before possible. Previously, if you wanted to find someone you used to know, you would have to do real work, like making a phone call or, even worse, writing a letter. Now, a plethora of opportunities to reconnect come unbidden through the portals of our lives.

Each time we reconnect with someone, we send them a note to catch up. And every time we do this, we give roughly the same information: we ask them what they’re up to, tell them how we’re doing, enumerate the number of children and pets we have, and tactfully skirt the issue of jail time.

Consider the countless seconds, nay, minutes we waste writing the same information to all of these people. With that extra time in our lives, we could be sending or responding to friend requests of other people we no longer know, or staring mindlessly at the visual noise on these social sites about everyone else we’ve already connected with.

When I am King, reconnections will be much more efficient, saving time and social energy. People will be more productive, more connections will be made, and everyone will have the dirt on everyone else, making it a more interconnected and paranoid society overall.

We will achieve this goal through the use of simple templates which fill in most of the pertinent details, leaving you to just select some choices and personalize the note before sending it off. This approach has worked well elsewhere and it should succeed for the social networking arena as well. Here is a sample:
[Their name]!

Great to hear from you! What have you been up to the past, oh, [Number] ["decades", "years", "minutes"]? We haven't seen each other since [personal reference, for example: "you said you never wanted to see me again", "you hit me", "I filed that injunction", "Tuesday"]!

I’m in [Location] now, [working at CompanyX, crashing with Mom & Dad again, living out of a shopping cart]. It keeps me busy, that’s for sure! In the meantime, I’ve had [Number] [kids, fish, nervous breakdowns], which is a lot, believe me! How about you?

Hey, I always wondered, did you ever [personal reference, for example: "get out of jail", "get that leg sewn back on", "solve that acne problem"]? And do you still [personal reference, for example: "play the tuba", "hum Barry Manilow tunes through your nose", "hate me"]?

Hey, it was great catching up with you. Keep in touch!

[Your name]
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