Ning has taken the world by storm, and has not yet begun the final super-growth we are accustomed to seeing on the net. I certainly believe we will, and that when it happens it will parallel Myspace, Facebook and similar sites. Currently it has 2 million networks, and 40 million users, on the system and they are adding 12 million new members are month. So what is just a smaller social system today will likely in the next two years be a big deal. So everyone involved today is like being on the ground floor of a site that everyone will soon be using and it is important to stake yourself now to benefit from it in the future.
Privacy is the first issue you will deal with. Ning allows you to be as private as you want to as public as you want. This is a highly useful feature, and offers ways to manage your social presence as a hub. The most private setting is invite only. The most public setting is everything open to everyone, regardless of their membership status. How much information do you want to share is important to understanding these privacy settings.
By Invite Only is the most private status, as this means you cannot be accessed unless you invite an individual to join. Even within that, you can even make it only administrators can be invite people. This is an excellent setting for groups that want to deal with themselves, and want privacy. It is also useful if you charge membership fees, either one-time or subscriptions. This will make it possible to have a level of security as about as high as you can get on the net. Remember nothing is ever 100% private on the net, ever. You can also allow members to invite people as well. This is great for families, companies for internal communication, secret societies.
By Request is only a tiny step down. This allows people to apply for membership, but still cannot see the site. It allows you to screen people, and add only those you want, and still maintain privacy.
Setting your privacy to Main page only, allows you to show just your front page. This still allows you to keep a lot private and still explain your site. At this point you can allow either open membership or still require approval of membership. This still grants a lot of privacy but allows some visibility.
To become a fully public site, allows more to be visible. This means that non-members of the site can see a lot of different parts as you choose. This is great for information sites for businesses, charities, and media sites. You can still allow people to join freely or creat invites.
So this deals with the Main Page, and yet you still have layers of privacy as you choose. Every time you put a Tab up, you can make it administrator only, member only, or open to the public. This way you can make some information public, and other parts private to your members, and even your administrators only. This is one of the best ways to get people to sign up, by having some private members.
This choice of privacy even goes down to how your form groups. You can make groups, public and visible to the public or private to your members. This is a great option, and it allows privacy even in the most visible sites.
One question of privacy is the member’s feature. This is one of the toughest choices, as you want to show you have a lot of members and interact with them. Yet some people can be sensitive to having their names able to be seen by anyone in the network. This level of public awareness will depend on how much privacy you feel as a creator is needed and will vary from network to network.
So as you develop your Ning Site, the issue and a policy of how much privacy you want is important. You can always begin very private, and except for Groups (which force you to choose when forming) you can always change your privacy levels at anytime, making them less private as you feel comfortable or more private as needed.
Consider privacy well, and remember that in the Internet world, nothing is 100% guaranteed private, and you should always consider that when you post anything. Having said that, Ning’s options are among the best way among Social Media for controlling your information and access to it.
To conclude, people must make sure that in the thrill of having to share their feelings on social media, they should never reveal too much of personal information so as to not give the chance to vested interests who are lying in wait in the virtual world for unsuspecting victims so that they can obtain valuable data and blackmail their prey accordingly so you can buy instagram auto likes if you want to but never sell of your integrity for cheap publicity.