It wasn't easy leaving Facebook, in more ways than just the difficulties getting your account deleted, but everything I have heard since convinces me that it was the right move to make.
Now I hear a rumour that Murdoch's News Corporation is in the running to buy LinkedIn:
An unconfirmed rumour has reached me via a reliable source that LinkedIn is in talks with media giant News Corporation over a possible buyout in January 2008. The reason I am running with this, is that the source is very well-placed. Furthermore, the rumour has the fundamental ring of truth about it. Consider the following.
I know how News Corp views the customers of it's services. One word: cattle. If this news turns out to be true I will, immediately, delete my LinkedIn profile.
This will leave me as a member of no mainstream social network service. The nearest thing to that will be my LibraryThing account. I trust the folks at LibraryThing won't be selling out to Amazon any time soon.
I wonder to what extent the people who own Facebook and (making the assumption that the News Corp rumour pans out) LinkedIn can consider and respect their members if they will consider selling out to companies with the unsavory reputation and predatory practices of the likes of Microsoft and News Corporation.
I don't trust Microsoft or News Corporation so I don't do business with them. If you're going to try to sell my profile to them, I'm going to burn it first.
Everything that is happening in the SNS space at the moment screams out to me that we need another way. I've been calling one concept of that other way Ring. Chatting with John Howard, yesterday, he called it a 'personal social network' which seems to neatly sum it up and why it's incompatible with the ambitions of dinosaurs like News Corporation, Microsoft, and, yes, Google.