This may be surprising for those of you that know me, but I can sometimes be a shy person.
For some reason I’ve never been very good at interacting with people online. I have profiles on MySpace, FaceBook, and LinkedIn, but I’ve never used those to meet new people. The only people I’m connected to are people that I already knew, or met some other way.
I read lots of blogs and other web sites, but I wouldn’t think of contacting the author of any of those sites directly. I rarely even leave comments on other blogs. I follow several online forums and mailing lists without ever posting.
The strange thing is, I’m not shy in real life. I have no problem walking into a room full of strangers, introducing myself, and interacting as a member of the group. My brain just doesn’t work the same way when it comes to online interactions.
I’m starting to think that this is holding me back. How can I expect to be successful online if I can’t carry on a conversation with other people? I have the skills to accomplish whatever I want, but no one ever got famous in isolation.
Aaron Swartz wrote an interesting article a while back called How to Get a Job Like Mine. In it, he says you should “gab”. I totally agree with him.
I think I’ll make this my next goal for 2008 – improve my online networking skills.
Now, who wants to be my friend?