To follow up from yesterday’s silly fear-drenched reaction to an innocent tweet regarding disconnecting from social media, I am tempted to touch up on another topic which often can turn into a heated debate. The idea of going on a social media diet.
When I comments from users who decide that they need to take some time off or even go to the length to quit a certain social networking service, I am amazed every time when someone decides to deride them for doing so.
Take a step back and look at the social media for a bit, look at how we use it and what we expect in regards to communication and being social. Then look at how we communicated “back in the days” before terms like social media were coined.
Your means of communication was very limited. Email was the main way to communicate electronicly with most people who dared to use a computer and the Internet. Then you had the more braver users who used IRC and IM.
At tops you had an email to keep an eye on, maybe stay logged in to MSN and you might also hang around on IRC.
If you avoided one of these, no biggie, as long as you used on of these means to communicate electronicly.
That has now changed – to the extreme dare I say.
You must be on Twitter. But more importantly you must be on Facebook, so you can stay in touch with those who find Twitter too confusing and scaringly enough find it too difficult to use somethign as simple as email.
It doesn’t stop there.
You should also consider reddit, Pinterest, Path, Instagram, etc ad nauseum.
All for the sake of sharing your communication publicly. Because sending an email to one person is a bit freaky and too personal, while posting on Facebook to all your “friends” that you had a poo is just normal and funny, in a quirky way.
But we don’t seem to intend to communicate. It’s monologue, and a plea to have someone hit “Like”, to give us approval for our existance.
Going on a social media diet is probably as easy going on a regular [food] diet. The will is there, but it gets disrupted by temptations and those around you who can’t really understand why you want to go on that diet. They want to be your friend, as long as you stay on Facebook; the same way they will gladly meet you at the fastfood joint rather than your home.