Who are these people and why are they talking about me?

A recent post by Forrester’s Josh Bernhoff finally got me going on this.

Why do people participate in social applications?

I have been working on why people participate in online communities – and after reading Josh’s post – one clear difficulty is definitional.

Social Applications include:

  • YouTube
  • Flickr
  • MySpace/Facebook/Linkedin, etc.
  • Blogs
  • Forums & newsgroups
  • Twitter

and all of their competitors. My thought is that we want to look at why people participate by type of application. Motivations for YouTube and Flickr (creative/storage) are quite different from Blogs (editorial) are different from MySpace (connections) are different from Forums (conversations/information) are different from Twitter (conversations and communication).

So, I am going to put together a series of posts examining participation motivations by social application type.

Only with this level of understanding can we do anything useful.

TO’B

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