My brother wrote My brother quoted Conan Obrien on Facebook this morning and it got me thinking: “In the year 3000…youtube, twitter, and facebook will merge to form one mega time wasting website called YouTwitFace!!!” It was his Facebook status. Like him, and many in my generation, I spend a lot of time on social networking sites.
It seems that everyone is talking about it too. On my Twitter account, most good Tweeters use a site called TinyURL to link to their blogs. On the blogs (Blogspot or WordPress), they talk about Life, Politics, Theology, Interests, and then the talk about how to use Twitter. How do you use Twitter? It seems like everyone has a different answer.
Some use it to promote their company and brand images. Some use it to stay in touch with friends, much like a streamlined Myspace or Facebook. Some people use it in lieu of Texting on a cell, while some use their cell phone to update Twitter like maniacs. Some like following American Idol’s Twitter Representative to get the latest gossip, and are friends with Oprah, Ashton, and Miley Cirus. Personally, I follow Matisyahu, and I love reading about his exploits in an old RV covered in bugs while he tours. There are so many different ways to use it.
Then there is the way that I use Twitter…because I am a techie, and anytime any new advance happens, I like to be on the forefront. I was on Myspace before Myspace was bought by NewsGroup. I jumped ship to Facebook back in the day when I realized that Facebook didn’t have as intrusive advertising, and have found it to be a great hub for photos, notes, and for commenting on others statuses. And when I started using Twitter a bit more a year after its introduction, I found out that I can use Twitter to update my Facebook status, switch over to Facebook on my Ipod Touch, and then read what others are saying about what I tweeted. Okay, a bit narcissitic, but come on, it is fun. And when you’re stuck waiting for a car to get fixed, or sitting in a mall waiting for your wife to get done shopping, Why not? And then I’ve found a way to enmesh myself further. Like a mad scientist, I can write a blog here on WordPress, Tweet about it, and then it automatically shows up on Facebook. The really good blogs, I star as a Favorite on Twitter so I can easily get back to it by clicking on a link, and now that is the way I organize my favorite blogs. I also write down thoughts on Twitter that I’m afraid I’m going to lose later, and star them if they are worth writing about later. I have become a Frankenstein of the social networks…and I like it. And it’s not even the year 3000 yet!
But to cap this off, I would like to let everyone know, that this has not changed how I value real face to face interactions with live human beings that I care about and who care about me. Part of my enmeshment, is that my life seamlessly flows from the internets. Rather than call someone, I Direct Messsage them, and we have a chat conversation in private. We make plans, and two days later we’re hanging in Boston Common having a cup of Starbucks, or Dunkin Donuts depending on the mood. And we’re not talking about Twitter, or facebook, or what’s happening on the blogosphere in Digg. We’re actually joking around, enjoying each other’s company and catching up on life and creating moments together. It isn’t until after the fun that the Twittering begins. I never had to learn this, since living life has always been a primary concern of mine. Tech is a means to a good life, not a good life in itself. But I realize that there are others who do not realize this, and so I see how many “How To’s” and Etiquette reports, and Warnings against the decline of civilization as we know it…etc.
Personally, I’m not afraid. I think its all just new, and there will hopefully be something newer tomorrow. Let’s just enjoy what we can understand and feasibly use, and not stress about it. Maybe you’re not enmeshed like me. That’s cool, I’ll call you sometime. We’ll chill.