I’m not sure that I understand the need for the personal network feature either. I suppose it’s nice to see that certain people have connections to others here on CGS. But, there is no real way of knowing if the connections are business or personal connections (or if they are just popularity connections). So what’s the purpose?
I like the Google Earth feature just to be able to find some folks who may be in my area for possible future CGS related meetings or networking. But the connections (I’m afraid) are just going to make a yellow mess of the globe and make things more difficult to view over time. It’d be much nicer IMO if the locations showed without the network connections and I could look in certain areas on the globe for people that I’d like to meet with (if I were travelling, for example).
I think I’d prefer if our favorites showed on our pages rather than our personal network. This would allow people who view portfolios to see the work of other artists who inspire and have work that is appreciated by the artist even though there are no direct connections personally or professionally to them.
For example …
I’ve never actually met or worked with Linda Bergkvist and aside from the Forum Leader connection I’m not sure how she is associated with me in a personal network. Which made it feel awkward for me to request a personal network connection from her. However, I (as many others here … I’m sure) would love to show on our portfolio page that her work has been inspirational in some degree and are honored to provide a link to her gallery on our pages.
Same situation would apply to other artists on CGS such as Steven Stahlberg, Philip Straub, Meats Meier, Robert Chang, Kory Heinzen, Wei Ming, any many many more too numerous to list here. I know of these people through my history of being a member on CGTalk and may have a relationship or conversation history with them on the forum. But to claim that they are close friends or professional associates wouldn’t be exactly true.
So, I’d suggest loosing the personal network in favor of moving the favorite portfolios into the display slots on CGPortfolio pages and keeping the Google Earth without the personal network connections.