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Good Ole Boy Networks

Good ol' boy network

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Good ol' boy describes a system of social networking and perceptions alleged to exist prevalently among

certain communities and social strata in the
United States. Although the term originated in the South,

these networks can be found throughout the U.S. and the rest of the Western world. It is typically taken

to refer to informal legal, judicial, social, religious, business, and political associations among white

males ("
good ol' boys"); however, in modern times can be composed of either or both sexes. In some

areas, the good ol' boy network is said to still exert considerable influence over many aspects of local

, business, and law enforcement. Usage of the term can often imply a wrongful exclusion of

others from the network; however, often the emphasis is on inclusion of a member, as in, "doing a good

ol' boy a favor".

Some negative effects
of the good ol' boy network are its exclusion of others, leading to leaders of a

community possibly limiting business transactions to other elites, or to friends or acquaintances from

within the network, to give friends better deals, and generally to reinforce traditional power structures

over any other elements in the society.

Perceptions of religious and racial
prejudice also endure, and the good ol' boy network is sometimes seen

as unique to
WASPs (White Anglo-Saxon Protestants), with Catholics, Jews, and minority groups excluded.

The network also functions like any other
social network
inasmuch as governmental, business, and

professional connections and concessions often develop via mutual friendships and introductions

established through the network.

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