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As I see that title I am now wondering how I can now justify it, but let me give it a go.

Firstly, let’s rid your mind of the romanticised stereotypical view of the Mafia; so that means you have to forget about horses heads in beds and machine guns outside of illegal underground casinos. You also need to rid your mind of anything criminal in fact, for my argument to work. So forgot about baseball bats and Las Vegas sand and lime too.

No, what I am talking about here is a mentality that, and we’ve all experienced this first hand, of something bigger and better, something worth much more than money, where money may actually be the by-product of the system.

The system of favours

The movement (loosely organised, and part of Folksonomy) of social media works by providing services that people want, typically information, or a bloody Dig, or a comment here and there, or something much bigger such as brand loyalty! People naturally migrate to providers and connectors of information and when and IF profit is made it is born out of a good relationship of those services and word of mouth endorsements.

If I help you in some way we have started to build a relationship, I have provided for you, without charge, something you want or need. In return you also provide for me or someone else in the social media family. This generosity is what builds trust, it is the currency of the movement.

If you assume money is the driver in this, you do not get the point, money will taint and in fact cheapen the exchange, the relationship. As I said money is a by-product of the favours and money WILL come if you play the game and focus on the exchange and relationships.

As an experiment (well and a bit of fun) I have now started another Facebook Page, called the Social Media Mafia (*update). this is an invite only group (you are free to request entry), where the members will have to have a “sit down” to approve newbies. The Family also now has an associated Social Media Mafia Website which the members will “take care of” very soon.

I’m chuckling a lot here :))

So, do you understand what I am trying to connect? Please tell me your thoughts.

Update: 30.05.08 I changed the Facebook link to point to a Page rather than group.