Will You Invest In Social Networking?

Senior Writer

A few years back, when online poker was at its apex, my roommate and I had a standing rule – if either of us hit a hot streak, that person controlled both accounts. At the time, that was a few hundred dollars I was letting someone else control, so that was the epitome of trust for me. Well that was nothing, friends, because Internet money is about to get REAL, and I’ve got a feeling we’re not in Farmville anymore.

A new online trend is creating smoke in the social networking medium, as financial investors are pushing the innovative idea of “mirror investing.” This means that people will soon be able to join specialized social networking sites that are developed specifically for investing, and they’ll be able to turn their money over to their “friends” on these new sites. The basic idea is that people will be able to see which investors in the “communities” are the most successful and they can strap a saddle on and hang on for the ride. But like any ride, there can be speed bumps and that means some people could lose their 401Ks and college funds thanks to complete strangers.

Luckily, experts believe that when it comes to investing online, your best bet is to invest in online stocks. Groupon’s denial of Google’s $6 billion buyout offer left plenty of people scratching their heads recently, but it was essentially a smart move for the online deal-a-day site. Statistics show that Groupon is performing on par with eBay in its early days, which is a pretty nice comparison. Despite all of the new competition trying to suckle at Groupon’s teat of success, the site is holding strong and will most likely continue to thrive, but the real bonanza will strike when privately-owned sites like Groupon – oh, and Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare, among others – go public.

But while I’m hardly an investment expert – most of my money is tucked away in a little company called student loan debt – technology is once again here to help the slow-witted like me. Bank of America Merrill-Lynch has created an iPad application that allows clients to access investment recommendations and pretty much any online resource they could possibly need. Oh that iPad, it’s like Apple’s Swiss Army Knife.


  • Online investing could make a cyber baby with social networking. (USA Today)
  • Groupon’s ballsy choice could mean big bucks in investing. (Investing Daily)
  • Wouldn’t you know, iPad has an app to make investing easier. (Business Wire)



  • If you thought that making out with your office skank after a few rounds of free Jager bombs qualified for a bitchin’ holiday party, you were wrong. Go Daddy dropped $4.3 million and rented out Chase Field in Phoenix to create a giant amusement park for employees. [With video] (ABC 15 News)
  • Apple’s iPad was the big social networking winner in 2010 as it made the Internet’s holy trinity by ranking among the leaders in the year’s trending for Google, Facebook and Twitter. Better luck next year, Colecovision. (eWeek)



  • Over the last 3 years, police in the United Kingdom have reported a surge of 540% in crimes related to Facebook. In 2010, police have received 7,545 calls about Facebook, and over the past 5 years the number of calls is over 100,000. (All Facebook)
  • According to Disney, social networking usage by senior citizens increased 100% between 2009 and 2010 as the number of grandparents humiliating their teenage grandkids grew from 13% to 26%. (SF Gate)


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