Murder, cyber-bullying, Julia Gillard. Social networking has garnered a lot of scrutiny lately. Privacy, cyber-bullying and suicides have all made headlines.

Tragically, 14-year-old Alex Wildman could no longer cope with the homophobic taunts. Nona Belomesoff was lured to her fateful demise. And who could forget Wil Anderson’s delightfully inappropriate Logies tweets?
But is social networking the real enemy?

This is how we’re choosing to communicate. The same stuff was happening 50 years ago. The only real difference is we didn’t have the technology or desire to share every painful detail of our lives. I don’t care if 25 of my ‘friends’ changed their pics, or the latest fabulous nobody checked in at Club fill-in-the-blanks. Evidently, it matters to them though.

The true genius of social networking is its ability to foster a collective mindset among people who’d otherwise be strangers. It’s a powerful thing. Politicians know it. Just ask Obama. All you need for success is a webcam and an idea. Just ask Justin Bieber. Like reality telly, it’s a guilty pleasure we love to hate, even if it means compromising privacy.

Honestly though, if you’re so concerned about privacy, don’t post anything. Better yet, don’t use the internet. Your data was shared long before your mother saw your giney on TwitPic. And the government has access to most of it. It’s the least of my worries if people know I support gay marriage.

Hours can be squandered wading through the days ‘events’. I have carpal tunnel to prove it. Is Kylie back? Is our first female PM still against same-sex marriage? And where else could we discuss the significance of having a ranga in the country’s top job?

The great tragedy will be when we hit middle age and realise we’re not stars, we don’t really have 5000 friends, and no one really gives a toss.

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