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Silver Surfing

This morning the Telegraph carries a feature about how “old people” (their words not mine) are increasingly signing up to social networking sites because they fear being left out.

The writer identifies, in his own time, that the internet may well be the future of communication. He’s worried that he might miss out on party invitations, jobs and vital conversations by not being present.

The article namedrops “Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Myspace and LinkedIn”. I’m sure we’ve mentioned this before, but just to reiterate for the benefit of the oldies – when choosing to join a social media community, relevance is key.

Unless your granddad is starting an Indie band there’s very little point in him being on MySpace.

On the other hand Facebook, with its world domination, will facilitate finding old school friends, sharing pictures of the grandchildren or keeping an eye on his son’s gap year and business networking sites like LinkedIn have clear professional applications.

The article fails to mention networks aimed specifically at the over 50s, like sagazone and eons. These claim to have a simpler more intuitive design and with applications such as daily crosswords and trivia are specifically targeted at silver surfers.

Twitter is an interesting one, it’s simpler to set up and to use than the others but does require a certain level of commitment. Personally I think it would be quite nice to follow my parents on Twitter; I’m sure ‘dad is mowing the lawn’ or ‘mum is making apple crumble’ would cheer me up on a Monday
morning.

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