By Hamish Johnston
Yesterday I was at a conference in London put on by the Specialised Information Publishers Association, or SIPA.
Although SIPA members publish both print and electronic products, old-fashioned paper was barely ever mentioned and the focus was on the Internet.
A great deal of discussion was devoted to building social networking sites for professionals — and we were treated to several success stories.
Some speakers argued that social networking is the next big thing for professionals, and instead of happening on massive public sites like Facebook or Bebo, professionals will interact on much smaller and much more exclusive “niche” sites.
An example cited by several speakers is SERMO, which claims to have over 65,000 doctors as members.
But what about physicists?
In September, the Institute of Physics (which owns the company that publishes physicsworld.com) plans to launch a social networking site for its members. The network has the working title MyIOP and according to the IOP’s Karen Bayless, “The network will enhance members’ ability to interact with each other more widely”.
Do you use social networking sites as a physicist?