My Virtual Neighbor social network would be awesome if your neighbors are actually on it

My Virtual Neighbor social network would be awesome if your neighbors are actually on it
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(CBS) - I have a confession. I am an anti-social neighbor and proud of it.

You know those apartment buildings where people who live next door to each other hang out, or at the very least, know each other. I thank the lord every minute of the day I don't live in one of those buildings. I prefer to remain an anonymous neighbor. Sure, if I see you in the elevator, I might ask you if you've seen mice or cockroaches (oh, New York City living). And sure, if I see you at the mailboxes, I'll say a quick "hello," but being friends and engaging in activities outside of being just neighbors, no thank you.

Here's why: the next time you, neighbor, are cooking something that smells like death and I passive-aggressively complain about it when I'm out in the hallway or the next time my boyfriend is playing the drums so loud, you decide to call the cops on us, imagine how much more awkward those instances would be if we were friends. This is the reason I also didn't have a roommate for years.

But then again - you might be the polar opposite of me. You might want to hang out with your neighbors. You might be lonely, friendly or both. And if so, you'll love My Virtual Neighbor (MVN).

I first heard about the site, which is a social network service that focuses on forming ties and encouraging interactions based on common interests, when Social Times wrote about it. One of their bloggers actually registered on the site to see if neighbors were members. "It appears that I am the only one right now," says the contributor. "The site has instructions on how to procure members, but I have to have their email addresses."

I signed up, too, just to see... No luck. None of my neighbors are on it either - and I live in Manhattan where there are tons of people with laptops and iPhones, not to mention highspeed Internet access. Lame!

That is probably the biggest problem with My Virtual Neighbor - its lack of, well, neighbors. But if you somehow coax your neighbors to join, you'll be in luck. My Virtual Neighbor even has a process in place to get more of your neighbors on the site. All you have to do is send the MVN team general unit numbers in your 'hood and they'll contact residents themselves. (Hopefully, your neighbors won't hate your guts for invading their privacy like that.)

Once your neighbors and you are all signed up, you can find out if you guys have similar interests, as well as organize events. Maybe you and your neighbors are planning a mutiny against your building's management company for not repairing those washing machines in the basement? Then My Virtual Neighbor will be your go-to place.

  • Ysolt Usigan

    Ysolt Usigan is the editor of lifestyle and technology for women at CBSNews.com

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