I’m really, really excited and curious about where social media is headed. Each new platform has the potential to become the next unexpected (but obvious in retrospect) step in its evolution.

That’s why I feel it’s my duty and obligation to join as many social media platforms as possible. While I miss plenty, I still have more accounts than one human being can possibly manage.

Penina and Fantastic Machine on Instagram

Occasionally, I’m reminded of a platform I enthusiastically joined, participated in regularly, and then dropped. Why? Maybe something else became more relevant to me, or the hurdles of the UX began to outweigh the benefits of participating. Those are just two guesses.

Colourlovers had an outstanding, tight-knit community that had grown beyond its actual function (casual color play for everyone, palette development tools for pros) to collaborative projects, vibrant conversation on any topic, and moral support during times of illness or loss. For a variety of reasons, the spark has since faded and I only visit the site from time to time, to flesh out color ideas and check on a few friends.

Other sites have slid below my social media horizons because their function is specific to interests I’m no longer pursuing, or their development focus deviated to a user base I’m not a part of. My lack of engagement with those has nothing to do with their quality or value. I love the Reddit community, but just don’t get around to visiting as often as I’d like. And one day when I “retire”, I plan to spend hours and hours contributing to Wikipedia.

In alphabetical order, here is a list of everything I can remember and/or find a record of. The ones I am actually using at least somewhat regularly are in bold. And yes, you’re welcome to come find me at any of these, except where noted:

Behance
Bookmooch
Care2
Colourlovers
Delicious
Disqus

Dribbble
Facebook
Flickr
Forrst (woah! What happened to Forrst? I’m ambivalent about new owner Zurb’s ideas, but hopeful enough to request an invite)
Gather

Google+
Instagram
LinkedIn
LiveJournal
Mightybell

NextDoor (private account)
Path (private account)
Pinterest
Plaxo
Readernaut
Reddit (but haven’t posted a spec to date)

Snapchat (private account)
Squidoo (have never created a lens)

Twitter
Vine
Wikipedia (but I’ll be back)
Yahoo (I’m there for the groups. You?)

It’s also interesting to note that social media has evolved and permeated our online lives to the point where the edges are quite blurred: Where does basic information consumption end and “social” begin? I go to Behance to learn about new design trends, and as a member, I can leave an “appreciation” or follow a talented creative. Spoonflower is a print-on-demand site with decent, but still limited (enough so to leave off the list), social networking functionality. Even more blurry: to leave a comment on a news or magazine site, I must either join the site (I have no idea which of those I’m a member of, so haven’t included them in the list) or choose to post via my Facebook, Google+ or Disqus membership.

I’m also on blog platforms like WordPress and Blogger. However, because you can connect with individual blogs and not their authors, I’m drawing a line and leaving them off the list.

And speaking of Discus, there are platforms which exist only (or almost only) to centralize and manage my online participation. I have no recall of signing up, and don’t even think about Plaxo, but it’s thinking about me.

penina pixel portrait by talI’m sure I’ve left something out. Feel free to comment with reminders (or suggestions).

P.S. I’m sure posting all these links is the ultimate SEO gaff, but…

P.P.S. My son made the fabulous pixel portrait of me, at right.

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