WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?
QUALITY OVER QUANTITY
IS THE SIZE OF MY NEOCORTEX THE ONLY CONSTRAINT ON THE NUMBER OF FRIENDS I HAVE?
|"Evidence in primates suggests that the size of social groups is constrained by cognitive capacity as measured by brain size. After a point, the number and nature of group relationships becomes too complex and groups tend to grown unstable and fission. Based on these projections, human beings should reach a 'natural' cognitive limit when group size reaches about 150. There is extensive empirical evidence of social groupings of about this size in the anthropological literature. It is suggested that language arose as a means of enabling social interactions in large groups as a more efficient substitute for one-on-one social grooming in primates."|
It seems that Friendster is a lot more than we first thought it could be. What simply started as a new way to hook-up, some people are theorizing, is the Social Software that will enable us to handle and deal with how we will relate to each other, or more specifically, how we will relate within our social network in the near future, taking in consideration all the new 'distances' (not, by any means, restrict to geographic ones) created by technology and its demands on us.
"Keeping up social relations is not simply about remembering everyone you've met or having a structure to keep track of them. It is also about having the time and ability to manage those relationships, keep information flowing, etc. Social networks are not simply about people that you can store to use as appropriate. Thus, i don't fundamentally believe that an augmented version of your network will give you the tools necessary to maintain more meaningful contacts."
This discussion comes at a time when i have been questioning what it means to be friends. Not that I use Friendster that much but it certainly has marked the beginning of a new era in social management. Beyond the sociological discussion it has also started a new software rush. Expect to see many new sites like it as in sixdegrees.com which appropriates the concept down to the name that Friendster only implied.
Apparently the anthropologist Robin Dunbar detected a cap in one's social network: he said that people can maintain up to 150 weak ties at any given point in time. 150 people, weak ties... The energy spent on maintaining those relationships... I know it is a status symbol to be popular - it's 'desirable' to have lots of 'friendsters'. But what does it say about a person? Can you seriously say you have 200 friends (the limit imposed on Friendster, not sure what's based on...)? Can you seriously say you have 20 friends?
Give me four true, meaningful friends.
I want friends i can talk to openly about me and about themselves. I want friends that will know me AND understand me even if by that i mean ACCEPT ME. I want friends i will know and understand AND ACCEPT as they are. Moles and all. It takes time and it takes an investment of time and emotion.
I want to be able to call you 'MY FRIEND'.
"THE SIZE OF MY NEOCORTEX" MORE RELATED READINGS:
Co-evolution of neocortex size, group size and language in humans R.I.M. Dunbar
More than one hundred and fifty Mercurial
The Magic of 150 Common Sense Advice
On Joining Friendster DaveXtreme