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Call for A Social Networking Bill of Rights (01 Jul 2004)
Important groundwork in the study and understanding of social networks began 70 years ago. However, the inspiration for social networking software was really born around the same time as the Internet, when many first began to see its planet-connecting potential. Around the same period many people, including myself, were drawn to the idea of social networking upon hearing about the idea of "six degrees," popularized earlier by Stanley Milgram (in 1967). In my case, my interest was due to a background in anthropology and sociology, and a love for the ideas of Teilhard de Chardin. I was fascinated with work coming out of several disciplines that suggested that networks are really the most intelligent form of organization, considerably more intelligent than hierarchies and centralized control structures. When I later also heard about the Internet (in the late '80s) I was of course ecstatic, as were most people who were in love with the potential of networked intelligence.
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