NEW DELHI: While millions continue to log into social networking sites like Orkut and Facebook to make friends and socialise, a small but growing number of individuals are also logging on to share not only their personal problems but also to find solutions for them.
Social networking sites are increasingly taking the shape of the new age online 'agony aunt'.
" Orkut has been a great strength of support for me. I had lost all faith in destiny till I logged on to a kidney transplant community where people with similar problems pepped me up by writing down their experiences," says Sarath Kumar from Hyderabad.
Sarath, who is looking out for a kidney donor for himself adds, "They were people who told me what to do, what all precautions I should take and even suggested names of some good doctors that I could get in touch with."
The popularity of such networking sites turning out to be the agony aunt can be gauged from the hundreds of help communities that have been set up, be it from complex issues like kidney transplants, blood cancer to much smaller issues like teenage heart breaks.
Not only do these communities attract a large number of members who indulge in periodical discussions to offer help to the one seeking, many also take part in these discussions as non members.
"The whole purpose of my community has been to reach out to people who face similar problems. Many of the fresher had joined my community and we discussed everything from anti- ragging rules to how to go about with their admission procedure," says Sashank Nair, who had set up a community for first year under-graduate students