>Facebook bridging the gap – literally

>It is amazing how Facebook is able to bridge the gap between long lost friends. I got a pleasant surprise when Salman rang me up on my phone here in Pakistan from USA. We have not talked, seen or met each other since 1990 when we graduated from our high school (Aitchison College) in Lahore and went our separate ways. I, like many of my class mates, left for USA for higher studies and he, like the rest decided to study at a top medical school in Pakistan. This was before email and internet was prevalent. We remained in touch but too infrequently and eventually lost track. In the preceding years, we switched numerous jobs, cities and countries with me finally ending up in Pakistan and he taking up a job as a medical practitioner in the USA.

Quite recently a classmate of ours (thank you Asim) initiated a Facebook group for the Graduates of 1990 from Aitchison College and that led for us to connect with many long lost friends. Salman was among them. Social Networks are not just a great idea but a wonderful way for us to connect, meet and bridge gaps between long lost friends. It is also a wonderful method for us to spread the word and share ideas, thoughts and visions with common friends.

Facebook has grown to over 100 million users since its launch just a few years back. If it were a country, it would be the 12th biggest country in the world behind Mexico (http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0004391.html). Considering its size and its phenomenal growth, it has immense influence over thoughts and lives of people from all over the world. It commands an eco-system within the Internet eco-system; a sub-internet world that that functions on its own.

I have come across teenagers who cannot live without their Facebook. They appear to eat, drink and breath Facebook. There are activists and social causes influencing and connecting disparate people to the same issue. It has friends and alumni connecting in ways previously unimaginable.

The future of social networking is bright and the power that it brings to the world is beyond what could be imaginable. As this technology moves to cell phones, we shall see an explosion of its use and further innovative ways to connect will be explored and created. So stay connected and enjoy the ride as it will only get better.

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About Atif Mumtaz
A serial entrepreneur who loves to travel, discuss politics and hikes on weekends.

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