Podcamp Halifax: Unfriend someone today

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Think you're friends with Joel Kelly? Don't count on it.

Joel – blogger, twitterer and digital meddler – is known for many things but none more than his reputation as the Fort Knox of Facebook. While some of us have hundreds of friends, he has managed to keep his list down to a respectable 28 despite pressures, threats and uncomfortable he's-just-not-that-into-you conversations.

How does he do it? Why does he do it? Why should YOU do it? I asked him some questions before his presentation at Podcamp Halifax to find out:

1) How many friends DO you have on Facebook?

28 right now, I think…

2) How do you determine who makes the cut?

If I don't mind them seeing something about my life that I'd consider quite personal, something only for real, actual friends. I take that "friend" word in the old-fashioned sense. Recently I've broken my own rules and added some people who probably wouldn't fit that particular definition. They may not survive the next culling…

3) What does the world have to gain by following your online friend etiquette?

The world? Probably nothing. People who are annoyed that Facebook has become useless to them, that they don't really use it anymore, that it's just a phonebook with pictures — those people stand to gain a useful, fun, powerful resource for staying in touch with their real, actual friends. I'm not suggesting this is for everyone, but it is a course of action worth considering. You don't *have* to friend your boss. Just tell her that your profile is very personal, and you like to keep it relatively private. You can't really argue with that.

4) How much longer do I have to pretend to like you before earning an add?

Another month or so.

5) What's the one thing, person, company, tool, or movement to watch in social media for 2009?

Politics for sure. The Obama campaign is a ridiculously thorough case study on how to just use the internet… About how to stop thinking about this stuff as some newfangled technology and just realize that this is how a huge chunk of the population communicates. It's just life. And that campaign has made it all a mainstream tactic for marketing, now. It's proven its utility, so you're going to see a lot of people start to lose some fear about it.

It's going to be interesting..

Keep an eye on http://podcamphalifax.ca for online video of the event's presentations. They will be uploaded as soon as they become available!

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