As you may know if you go back earlier in this blog, I live in South Florida and used to be an avid sailor until Wicked Hurricane Wilma wrecked my boat... Back at the time I posted a bunch of photos of the storm's damage to my home and boat on Flickr and tagged them "Wicked Wilma."
I recently received the following message through Facebook from someone who I don't know and who is not a Facebook friend:
Jeff, I sent you a message already on Flickr but I am trying to get in touch with you seeking permission to use one of your photos in our 2005 Annual Report to Congress. I am trying to find a photo from hurricane Wilma to include in our pub. Please let me know if you are interested.
I thought it was telling that I noticed the message via Facebook, long before I received the email through Flickr. My Flickr account is tied to a Yahoo Mail address that I hardly check on. Facebook, on the other hand, is always open in a browser tab, and has an extremely efficient mobile alert piece that forwards messages right to my Treo via SMS.
The Real Story
More telling was the fact that the person trying to reach me figured out that, when he received no reply to his message via Flickr, he could potentially find me through Facebook. And he did, successfully. The picture above is the image that prompted the search for Sass.
In business, it is often difficult to find a working email address for someone you don't know, and many of the services that do provide contact info, do so for a fee. Facebook provides an easy and open means of making contact with its members. A powerful feature when properly used and not abused.
Have you been contacted randomly through Facebook? Have you successfully made contact with someone you were trying to reach through Facebook? Do all these questions make this sound like one of Chris Brogan's blog posts???