I agree there are so many of these sites that it can be overwhelming at times. I've learned to ignore most of them. However, I do see some profound value in them.
For starters, I saw The Other Boleyn Girl in a friend's Netflix queue. I probably wouldn't have ever watched it on my own. However, since I knew that my friend liked and that there's a certain overlap in the films we like, I made a point of watching it.
And I loved it.
I never would've watched if I hadn't seen it on her Netflix queue. The preview just didn't grab me when I saw it in the theater. However, once I saw it, I loved the film.
Facebook has enabled me to keep up with various people that I knew in high school, that I've seen around town or that I've worked on one project or another. These are folks who aren't my closest of friends, but I still like knowing when something big happens in their life.
Because of Facebook, I found out about two engagements, a marriage and the birth of several children that I wouldn't have otherwise known about.
It's also a good way of arranging a time for everyone to get together in the flesh, which is a challenge with the schedules that some of my friends have. The pizza party at Gracie See's this past Wednesday was simply the latest example of this.
So, yeah. I'm pretty much hooked on Facebook and loving it.
In the interests of keeping my life simple, I've written off MySpace. Because all of their profiles are customizable - and people add so much crap to their MySpace profiles - things often take too long to load.
There's the fact that MySpace allows people to come up with any screen name that they want. That, plus some goofy profiles photos, means I really don't know who some of my MySpace friends really are.
"Love, what does it mean to you?" Interesting question, but that is "name" one of my MySpace friends. I have no idea who he or she is.
It's kind of hard to "network" with someone when you don't know who they are.
Oh, and the fact that some people will have a half dozen or so MySpace profiles is kind of annoying. Again, I'm never really sure who or what I'm networking with.
So, to summarize my entire diatribe, these social networking sites have their advantages. It's just a matter of weeding the good parts out from the bad.