25 Things and Social Networking

March 18 2009, 5:09pm

You probably know about the 25 Random Things About You phenomenon that has been proliferating on Facebook. If you haven't then you should know that it's a chain-letter exercise where you list out 25 random things about yourself and tag your friends to do the same. Oh, and it's also been featured in Time and The New York Times. That's right, two huge news sources.

According to Time, "assuming someone [spends] 10 minutes to come up with their list, this recent bout of viral narcissism has sent roughly 800,000 hours of worktime productivity down the drain."

Recently, there has been a surge of pictures being added with images of various characters resembling different types of individuals. In these pictures, people who most resemble such headings as "The Cute One," or "Likes to Take Naps," are tagged as that character. Those tagged are further encouraged to copy the picture, post it, and do the same.

Here are examples of such pictures,

Character Set 1
Character Set 2
Character Set 3
Character Set 4

It is interesting to see how open people are and how they interact with social networking spaces. Moreover, it is interesting to see how such activities take the place of task productivity (for instance, to finish reading and working on a paper).

In a time and place where so many workforces are reorganizing their human capital, one has to look at the influence social networking is and will have on workforce performance. Is it something that should be permitted in the workplace? Does it increase productivity? Does it decrease it? Is it an inherent tool within Generation Y's arsenal that allows them to better function?--These are questions that will have to be explored and tested sooner than later in order to harness the power of technology and create more effective individuals.