The more I use facebook, the more powerful it has become professionally. That’s for two reasons:
1) I have over 300 "friends" now in my facebook account, most of them professional colleagues. Some of them are former rivals and there was no love lost when we started at each other over the cannons. Facebook breaks down those barriers. Some of these folks are very influential in our business and industries they cover. facebook also puts you back in touch with colleagues from long ago that I never would have from again. We have doubled the number to 134 in our Design News facebook account. Come join us.
2) If I comment on or post something, all 300 plus "friends" get notified. It’s like my mini-circulation list which I own and control. You have to be careful, though, and not spam them (i.e. over-communicate) and make sure a comment or link to something is meaningful. As for expanding that crowd, I’ve already picked the low-hanging fruit. Now I have to selectively and more slowly grow my list. But expansion is important.