Can I trust you?
Should you trust me?
And what exactly are we trusting each other with?
I started thinking about these things recently when I started to get email requests for my trust on spock.com. Spock.com is a great “search application for people” which I wrote about in June. Since then I hadn’t seen much uptake in my circle but recently I’m getting requests from complete strangers as well as my co-workers.
Good for the team at Spock as they seem to be gaining some traction, especially with the addition of the network and trust features (and this post shouldn’t be seen as a dig against them), but is it good for me?
I’ve been using Spock (or should that be spock?) mainly for online identity management in conjunction with my claimID, so everything is public to start with. So I’m really just sharing with the people whom I “trust” the profiles of related people. Not too bad really, just a step away from “friends” on MySpace.com – or is it?
LinkedIn is a closed community and I do trust the contacts I have there as they are all people I have met or know through someone I trust outside of the web. Not so with the people on Spock. By just accepting the trust of 9 people I have the profiles of 688 others in my network. To what end? What is the trust we have? Could it backfire on me?
Maybe it’s the choice of word that is causing me to over think this, but as we stampede into 2008 where social networks are sure to expand and encroach further into our daily online lives, should we be bandying around words such as trust in places where we know little of nothing about the people we’re assigning that word to?
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