In the process of investigating how all this lending stuff works, I came across Rick Broida's cnet article Four Matchmaking Services for e-book Borrowing and Lending that lists four online sites that evidently help match you up with another reader who wants to swap e-books and/or allow you to lend and borrow e-books for free (I've yet to personally check out the terms and conditions on any of the sites so if you do want to give them a test-drive be cautious and read up on their small print first.)
I'm also not sure how many Nook friends I really want to have. I haven't bought a lot of books for the e-reader, so my library is still pretty tiny. I'd be okay with lending books, but for my part I'm more inclined to pay for a book than borrow one (that way I own it and I can read it whenever I want.) And the whole "friend" aspect really annoys me; why do they have to use that word? That's the reason I've avoided LiveJournal and Facebook; I have a very different definition of the word friend. I think your e-reader "friends" can ask you to lend them books, too; what if I'm reading it and say no? Will they decide we're not friends anymore?
It makes my head hurt just to think about it. I also suspect one can easily go overboard with this sort of thing and become a slave to your e-reader lend-me-borrow-me whatever list. It's not something I want to do or check every day or even every week. If anything I'd like to build a small, private circle of like-minded book lovers who like to swap books a couple times a year. More like a private e-book club, minus the meetings.
I'm still learning, and I know 99% of you out there are way more knowledgeable on these things than me, so if you have a moment I'd appreciate some advice. Have any of you come up with a workable system to handle lending out your e-books? Do you have a small circle of e-reader friends, do you just lend to family, or have you tried one of these e-book matchmaker services? Also, how is the whole lending thing working out for you? Let me know in comments.