Back in the old days, when dirt was still rocks and I was a young man exploring the wild west frontier of the internet, I would daily telnet into my local BBS. It was costing me a fortune, was very very slow, (and frustrating many times) but was a small price to pay for this brave and experimental new world behind the keyboard.
There were only a handful of users at the time who would leave messages, mainly about modems and other computer related hardware, but it was new and exciting. Who could have imagined how successful networking giants such as Flickr, Facebook, and Twitter, to name a few, would become as they are today.
Recently I joined Twitter and have found it to be invaluable in resources regarding photography. Twtter can be overwhelming, but it can also be whatever you want it to be as well. More or less, and with out many rules, it provides me with a steady and relevant flow of information that I continually find both useful and entertaining.
For anyone who might be considering the advantages of using twitter, here is a link to a short article by Martin Perlin at Black Star Rising titled "Six ways to focus your twitter strategy and grow your photography business." Also, I can now be followed on Twitter at twitter.com/slimeface.
Bottom line: Once you’ve learned to build and nurture the right kind of network, the possibilities are endless!