Orkut testimonials

I have always thought that Orkut testimonials are extremely exaggerated. The more I think about orkut, the more I realize, it is merely a networking tool to find people based on information posted by one’s own self. One of its tools that I have failed to understand is called “testimonials.”

Assume that you (A) like someone’s (X’s) testimonial written by another person (B). What does it mean? Relationships are mostly binary. That B likes X does not mean that A will also like X, even if the testimonials look attractive! Furthermore, all testimonials use exaggerations and look the same.  So, then should every one be connected to everyone else, directly?

Another case is that of great testimonials, great scraps, great information, and people saying that they are at orkut to make friends, and then adding – “don’t contact me if I don’t know you!”  Such people also have great testimonials (and scraps), clearly, only for the public to read!

So, what are testimonials really for?

15 thoughts on “Orkut testimonials

  1. I agree with you for the most part. The problem I think is with people. If I dont know a person well enough or dont have anything unique to say about our friendship then I think I’m wasting time and its uninformative. Also I, like you will not bother reading testimonials about anyone(knowing someone is a very personal exprience and does’nt work like business).

    What instead I think would be more useful is to tag people anonymously. This is’nt that unusual and several successful companies are doing it these days. Consumating.com is a social networking site just like orkut that
    uses tags. More generally speaking flickr, digg, deli.icio.us, buzzfeed, citeulike are great websites that use such tags to improve content.

  2. Ant eater,

    All of what you and I said could be summed up in one sentence that you wrote, “Knowing someone is a very personal exprience and does’nt work like business.” Orkut is for personal connections, not business! So, recommendations will not work!

  3. Yeah, recommendations or stars or hearts or whatever else..

    I use it to get in touch with my ‘marginal’ contacts, i.e. people I had lost touch with since school..good friends but just not practical to stay connected on a regular basis.

    People seem to find it quite useful to find dates/hook up.

    Orkut certainly has its uses and several redundancies(for the retarded) so it can keep everyone happy.

  4. I write testimonials because I want to express my feelings for my friends. Although I tell them in other ways, testimonial is just a way to remind them that someone thinks nice of them. I don’t read my testimonials everyday but sometimes when I read them I feel happy. (Yes, it takes very little to make me happy.) Oh and frankly, I don’t read testimonials of people I don’t know!! So I agree on that part that knowing someone is a personal experience. What I feel or think about someone is not necessarily what you would feel/think about her/him.

    I don’t remember the exact line, but it goes something like that the same person can seem smart to someone and stupid to another!

  5. Testimonials help. If a persons testimonial has “Simmi Garewal” type praises then most probably his/her friends circle is pretentious. Testimonials are like reccomendations, you would at the least be ready to interview the person. Giving a job is a different issue. What say!!

  6. I know this isnt really pertinent to this exact post of your’s but I had noticed another post regarding orkut as well. So I thought I’d just include this. The folowing question was put up on an orkut community:
    “with so many social networking sites..there are so many people i see who have more than 100 or odd friends listed..and this never ceases to baffle me…

    how many of these pals could be real friends or how many step beyond the world of IM?
    moreover how intimate can a conversation be when the whole world is listening in..”

    and my response was:

    well….most of the ppl in my frnds list are classmates….having 120 guys in my mech. engg. batch and having most of them on orkut already adds up to a huge total……then comes the schoolmates, long lost friends, relatives etc. etc………most of these ppl u dont really keep in touch with…….they just add me and since i studied with them or have had some kinda acquaintance with them, i accept…….

    for example….one of my friend’s friend came down from far off and we all hit a club together…..one week later, he sends me a friends request……..well…its not coz we communicate often…..but he’ll let me know if he comes down again……basically networking i guess…having contacts in different places…..

    and coversations on orkut…..they are public indeed……if u meet someone new and start talking, tis only a matter of time before you take the chat to yahoo or gtalk or whatever’s in vogue these days….then there are the occasional scraps to old friends who ur not really in touch with……like…wassup..howz it going…..trivial niceties and all…..or just updating each other on whats going on…

    but then again, i remember having a conversation with one of my close buddies……i told him to get on yahoo and he couldnt…something was messed up with his messenger…..and he was like….chatting on orkut is fun coz he’s speaking to me in code…..everyone can see what the conversation is ….but they can only guess as to what is really being said in between the lines…..basically twas a mind game….hehe..

    regarding popularity…..it shouldnt be seen as a contest….ppl who actually go by the number of friends or fans or testimonaials as a barometer of popularity are misguided at best, though deluded would be a more apt term………..

    i can understand if ur new to orkut and get overawed by the number of friends and fans and all, but once u settle in, u kinda realize that its nothing really………

  7. Just to add my bit on the testimonial part….
    If you really want your friend to know how you feel about him/her you could very well do that in a personal message or a good ol’ fashioned email.
    And yeah most testimonials are “SIMI GAREWAL” types…man did we just add an adjective to the all encompassing English language…
    The way I look at Orkut is that that one day when I want to talk to the people I once knew well I have them at my fingertips….

  8. Pingback: You Are Not My Friend… « Lalit Patil’s blog

  9. Hmm.. Now if you notice, that the people who say. dont contact me and blah keep their testimonials private. Besides that people who think more about their privacy have migrated to facebook now. But I still liek orkut and the funda of orkut testimonials rocks cuz this is some sort of way I get to know of what my friends think of me. (yea flattery is used a lot in here, but who does not like to hear their praises? ..lol

    Regards,
    Samarth

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