Where do you see social networks going?
Personally, I've noticed my own transition from spending most of my social networking effort on Facebook to Path. Now, I'm not a terrific writer, so I hope you'll be able to get the gist out of what I've written. Apologies in advance. :)
Facebook - What us Social Networking fiends are used to
Facebook has become a universal network that can gather an enormous amount of data, mainly (and originally) from a computer. Mobile applications for accessing Facebook have really just been a window into the network, with the exception of mini-apps (FB-exclusive) being added into their interface. Unfortunately, the view from a window is not by any means a full experience. The issue I see here is that Facebook is slowly becoming the next Myspace when it used to be the opposite... a cure. Applications, fan pages, automated event finding services = bloat IMHO. Don't get me wrong, these features are useful for many people.
Path - A guide to the future of Social Networking?
Path has amazed me thus far. Forget the fact that it has a maximum amount of friends that may be added. It has several different options that are simple and sufficiently customizable. One of the features I'm actually in love with is its ability to publish the latest music track that I listened to. I've always wanted that in the messaging applications (Meebo, AIM, etc) that I use. Path also, however, is geared exclusively for mobile users though as there is no desktop interface (aside from basic account settings from what I can tell). It's much more intimate.
I think as our world becomes increasingly more connected outside the casual WiFi hotspot locations, networks like Path will become the most useful. Simple applications for networking with friends in a casual way. Just a little information, no advertisements (for the moment anyway). We're in the midst of a shift for the betterment of the future in my opinion.
What do you all think? Which is better? A wealth of information that is the foundation for a social network, or simply building on the relationships of people and their individual activities?