I’ve experimented with various social media over the last eighteen months. By nature I am not a social person. I like my alone time. Figuring out how to use the right social media, and what value it has for me, has been a lengthy exploration. There’s a lot of advice offered on this topic and I have no helpful suggestions about who to follow, what to try, or if any of it matters. Mostly, I’ve figured out what I can tolerate. There’s value in knowing limits. I don’t believe the hours of my day should be squandered on meaningless effort.
Twitter is an information-sharing bonanza. Should I find myself in the mood to read something witty, there’s an endless smorgasboard of links flitting through my feed. Because I’m not a chatty person, I send Tweets out into the tweet-o-sphere and like dust motes, they float around getting caught in the gust of wind generated by the passing mob.
Well-known to Twitterites is Triberr, the volumizing and atomic-sharing engine of friends-spamming-friends with tweet announcements. I actually like Triberr but in my experience it mostly generates a white buzz of background noise that folks simply ignore. I know I do. Hundreds of twittery notes spin through my daily pipeline and I ignore every last one of them. I’ve also learned that few tribemates participate, or they do so in such a selective manner, promoting only the rare post of others that they might as well not bother. With a potential reach of two hundred thousand in my audience, I’ve seen zero impact on my website, but it’s fun to say almost a quarter million people might see my blogpost, so I keep playing the game.
Facebook is the platform especially designed for stalkers. The perfect place to hang out with friends, track family escapades, spy on colleagues, and re-connect with all those folks from high school that you avoided keeping in touch with since graduation, er…? Yeah. I love the fun of Facebook. The posting and sharing of entertaining pictures, memes, and jokes is like a big giant water cooler around which we can all gather. I dislike when people use Facebook to promote their political positions, proselytize their religious beliefs, or bombard me with pleas to buy their book or their kid’s Girl Scout cookies. There’s a downside to everything, right?
Blogs are the best, and the worst offenders, in my opinion. I’ve followed hundreds of blogs, many of which shutter and go dark within months of birth. Abandoned and burned out, these forgotten sites linger in the twilight of the internet, waiting to be rediscovered and revived. I’ve read awesome blogs with wonderful content and some that just fill up the emptiness with chatter (those can also be fun, no harsh indictments here). I’ve tried various schedules for blogging and have realized I’m a more seasonal kind of social media participant.
As the months have passed and I watch the stats on my blog, I realize there are certain posts which bring a constant stream of visitors even months after publication. This confirms my suspicion that the content I write is interesting primarily to people researching niche topics. As a result, I’m embracing slow blogging and converting my energy into other areas of writing – which means one post a week from me.