Posts Tagged ‘social media’


I heard about the new social media site called Facebook shortly after it started becoming popular, but I did not join it right away. I could not. Facebook started out as a site for high school and college students. I did not meet the requirements until they opened it up to the general public.

I joined Facebook for a few reasons. First, I was not very happy with Myspace (see a previous article). Second, my nieces and nephews were migrating to this new site. Third, some of my former Boy Scouts had joined Facebook. Fourth, I liked the format better than some of the other social sites.

I soon discovered that quite a few Boy Scout Troop 68 alumni had Facebook profiles. I had lost touch with many of them once they graduated from high school. My Facebook friend list began growing. It became not only a great way to stay in touch, but also a great stay to keep up with their lives, and yes, families. I would guess that nearly half of the alumni of Troop 68 of the last thirty years can now be found on my friend list.

Another benefit of Facebook is that the fans of my podcasts, the Melrose Scouting Productions video podcast and the Around The Scouting Campfire audio podcast, have another way to get in touch with me. There is a Facebook fan page for the podcasts. Even Buttons, the radical Boy Scout, has a Facebook profile.

There are Scouting based groups found on the site, even one for our troop’s favorite summer camp, Many Point Scout Camp. The Central Minnesota Council has a profile page. Just a few of the groups of which I am a member include:

Melrose Scouting Productions – http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=23501972197

PTC Media – http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=47770885498

1st Facebook Scout Group – http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2450689742

Many Point Scout Camp – http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2231826715

You Know You Are A Boy Scout When… – http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2258927974

Do I spend a lot of time on Facebook? I would say not really, unless I get involved with a chat. I check out the site a few times a day for a few minutes, post something once in a while, and add pictures to my photo albums. It usually is only a several minutes per visit. I try not to get too caught up in the site, but I also try to stay in touch and up to date with friends.

Several years ago, when Myspace was the social network that everyone seemed to belong to, I created a profile and decided to join the fun. I found some of my friends, started building up a network, and joined a few Myspace groups. Eight of those groups were Scouting related. For awhile, I kept checking things out, including the groups, to see what was happening in this new virtual world. I hate to say it, but I was never quite impressed with what Myspace offered, and it seemed that most of my friends felt the same way.

I still have a Myspace profile but I seldom go to it anymore. Facebook and Twitter have taken over my virtual social life. I actually had a little time tonight so I thought it would be interesting to check out Myspace again and see what has been happening in those groups I had joined. Nothing much, I discovered.

For example, there is a group called Boy/Girl Scouts of America. It states that it has 2013 members. But yet, only 4 or 5 messages have been left in the forums this year. In 2010. Out of over two thousand members! Not very active in that group. So I checked out another group, The Boy Scouts of Myspace America. It boasts of having 1981 members. Only two of them have posted anything on the forums this year so far. And I was one of the two.

Each of the groups I checked had the same results. It appears that many of the people that once used Myspace to keep in touch with other Scouts around the country and the world have left Myspace for other social media. I guess I can not blame them. I did the same. Now granted, most people do not leave comments on group forums very often unless something catches their interest, but I have to say that I do see more activity in the other social sites.

Do I plan to drop my Myspace site? Not yet. You never know what could happen down the road. It may not currently be as good as Facebook, in my opinion, but I think it is better then another (national) Scouting based social network that some of us have tried and have been disappointed with. But my feelings about that network is another article.