So apparantly nobody got, what I meant with my social networking image from the Colliding in the real world to distribute the virtual post - not even my bro as you can see from the comments to the post!!
I won't go into too much detail here - I think it's most enlightening, if one discovers it for herself. But for some clarification I want to explain it a bit at least. I already had a good VoIP chat with my bro the day after posting it, but still I can't really put it into a couple of short and good sentences.
In the first image every circle stands for a human individual. And the links are connections between those individuals, just like it is in the real world. That's what is called the social graph, it's the reality.
In the second image we see, how the so called 'social networks' like Facebook, Friendster and Xing are built. There is one central database, that connects all those individuals. To us customers this is usually sold as a possibility to utilize our social graph on the internet. This is not really wrong as those sites are capable of modeling most of the stuff that makes a social network valuable, but still it's not the social graph itself as the picture clearly shows. If you want to tell your boyfriend about your sexual desires, then you don't put that information into a database owned by someone else and tell him to pull it from there, do you? I bet you would rather have him pull it from you or even better push it to him - just like in the social graph that is the reality.
Well, the third image shows how the social graph should really be modeled on the internet. Every individual got its own node, its own database on the internet which then connects to other nodes, other databases representing other people. This kind of thing basically is possible, it represents reality by far the best and it is already being worked on. It is inevitable that it will be reality one pretty soon day!
So what about that "Social Mining"-thing? Yeah, my bro already said it in the comment to the last post - this thing is not completely new. When you put 'social mining' in parentheses on Google (and even better Yahoo), then you get lots of hits telling you about it. Well, still I take that as a strong indicator for it not being anything mainstream yet. If it would be, then one would get lots of good hits without the parentheses. And the current hits mostly talk about gathering information from your Outlook contacts and usage. But basically, yeah, that's it! The thing I was ponding here with "Social Mining" was more: When this model of decentralized social networks becomes reality, then the most valuable player in the marketing field will be the one that can produce the most valuable information from the data available on the decentratlized network. You can't just go Data Mining in your Facebook-Database and tell companies what kind of book this guy bought and the reason for it is most likely that he saw a similar book on three of his friends 'I bought'-lists. Nope, with a decentralized network every individual owns her own data and so this will become much more difficult. And those special Data Mining skills will be known as Social Mining imho.