[Wednesday Ramblings] Tricky Social Media

So I wasn’t sure what to write about today until I opened my email this morning. But sure enough a topic that I could run with presented itself and here I am, typing away.

I’m fairly certain I’m not alone when I say I don’t understand how the whole social media thing works out. Like, I don’t get Twitter. It’s neat, its simple, and I’ve gotten used to how it works, but I can’t tell what it is your supposed to use it for. I think its for those kinds of thoughts you have at random and it certainly makes a good point of contact for other platforms to use—but others seem to have very different ideas about the whole affair. Case in point, I got a few emails this morning about new followers on twitter. Since I’m not rolling in followers, I like check out who’s followed me, as most of the time they’re fairly interesting.

From his tagline, the guy seemed like one of those cases, until I looked at his feed. Every single post was advertising—either for his blog, his books, or his newsletter. In a weeks worth of time, he hadn’t said anything that didn’t look like a spambot could have typed it just the same. There was no personality, only cold marketing. It was tragic and I didn’t follow him back.

But maybe that’s just me, I am pretty bad at the whole social media thing after all. I mean, I’ve got an account on all the usual suspects, but half the time I forget that any of them even exist. To avoid being one of those people with Social Media Diarrhea, I really only speak up when I’ve got something I to say that I feel is worth saying—not that I’m eating or picking my nose or watching that Dimitri Martin special for the fiftieth time. Unfortunately, most of those times is me asking for input on something or to post something like this—making me look just about the same as the first guy whose feed was just hype for things he’s done.

So to counter this I try and talk with people, but that has it’s own, perhaps more dangerous, pitfalls. On Twitter in particular its tougher, I have a hard time knowing when to respond to someone’s tweet. My drafts box is full of half typed responses that I decided to abandon as I wasn’t sure about the etiquette or don’t want to seem creepy by being that guy who responds to everything someone posts—a hard point when some of the people I follow only post once in a while.

I know this probably reads like “Trevor’s social anxiety makes it difficult for him, please pity him” but that’s not what I trying to say. What I’m trying to figure out is the balance between seeming like a selfish twit and being overtly creepy. I feel it’s a fair question seeing as social media isn’t going away and will likely continue to be a driving force of culture, if only online. Its this kind of stuff that I think about when I can’t sleep at night. I think deep down I’m an anthropologist but wasn’t sure what to do with that interest and focused it into writing.

Anyway, rambling now. So I’ll sign off before I hit the saturation point. See you next week!

EDIT: Is the topic image useful?


About Trevor Gulley

Trevor Gulley is a writer, cartoonist, and gamer. He works full time in the IT industry and judges Magic most weekends.

Posted on 04/18/2012, in Wednesday Ramblings and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Tweets are supposed to be fast. In and out. A drive-by sort of thing. Even if you send out a “dumb” tweet, it probably will just get buried along with the timeline. Tweet away.

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