It was a good run. Social media started for me with Myspace. I hadn’t intended to use it for socially meeting people though. Myspace had a blogging feature back then. So my main purpose for being on there was to use the site as a blog. Then I figured out that I could post the link to each blog entry in the broadcast feature and get more views from it. We had a good group over there and we got into some discussions. This all ended though, once Facebook surpassed Myspace. When that happened, Myspace decided to become the black and yellow Facebook and in one fell swoop, wiped out the designed pages that everyone had worked so hard to make. Granted, most pages looked like someone threw up a crayola soup all over them but still… they were our pages. This led to the great Myspace exodus. If they were going to force Facebook on us, we might as well just go learn Facebook. So we did.
Facebook was different though. It wasn’t about meeting other people but collecting your real life friends and family into an ecosystem. The problem with this is that while you may get along great with friends and family in real time, that doesn’t always translate onto the internet where no filters make people much more apt to say what they want to say. Suddenly you saw people who knew each other or who were friends in real life (IRL for you Millenial dopes) fighting and arguing with each other. This led to people de-friending people. It’s really quite toxic. The fact is, the people we meet online generally come to it through an interest base, whereas, the people we know in real life are the relationships that were made through family or being in real proximity. Facebook does NOT foster a good atmosphere for people looking to find similar interests.
Enter Google+. G+ started off awesome!!! People quickly found others with similar tastes, ideas, and interests. We could group them into circles and then just post specifically to those circles. That way if X liked movies and TV conversations but hated politics, X would never see your political posts because they were posted to your politics circle. This was actually an ingenuous way to keep ideas based on interest going. Also, we had Hangouts on the side and could instantly hit up anyone for a chat or video Hangout if we wanted to take the conversation to another level. Sadly, Google is the House of Half Assed and when they changed the site up this last time, they ripped out Hangouts, made posting a chore, and added Collections. Collections might have been a good thing but they quickly turned into forgotten relics that no one posted too. Instead of people choosing 5 or 6 Collections that they talked a lot about, they made Collections for every topic under the sun. So when you went searching for a Collection that you had interest in, you would see that the last post in that Collection was 20 weeks ago so that Collection was probably dead and useless to follow. Communities started out strong on G+ too but then people lost interest in most of them. Add to that the constant spam and porn posts from spam artists and you couldn’t even bring G+ up in a public place for fear that people would think you were on a porn site if they looked over your shoulder. Thus began the great G+ exodus which would take most people over to Twitter. You want to talk about a dumpster fire? Let’s talk Twitter…
G+ had the greatest platform but lost the users, meanwhile, Twitter has the worst platform but has all of the users. Twitter is a toxic dumpster fire. It is a place to be snide, rude, and develop your witty and cutting edge comebacks and insults into 280 characters a scathing idiocy. I really hate Twitter though I use it. The upside to Twitter is LIVE Tweeting with stars when TV shows come on. That’s actually fun. Also, you get better customer service from brands when you blast them on Twitter than you would get from calling their customer service line. Outside of that… It’s a Dumpster Fire. Twitter is too much information, too politicized, and too loud. When you post a tweet, it is the equivalent of sending a message in a bottle off into the ocean. The jump in character count from 140 to 280 has helped create better conversation but all in all, Twitter is not a place to converse. It is a place to complain, rant, rave, and just release your inner Hulk. Ideas really don’t get exchanged and echo chambers of followers exist in ways that rarely allow either side of any issue to see anything different. Twitter is a place where Block Lists are distributed so people can just go ahead and mass block you, just so they never have to come across a Tweet that might offend them or make them think. Twitter is a place where your Tweet count seems to be something that validates you. When one person noticed my Tweet count stays at around 500 or less, and asked about it, I told him I have a free service monitor and delete Tweets after 7 days on a regular basis. He was shocked. He asked me why and I said, why do I need them around? He had no answer. The only people that go back looking through tweets are those that want to spring something on you. No thanks. Talk about a waste of time.
I’m on Twitter and Facebook. Facebook is more for just family and food pictures. I’ve steered away from most comics and politics talk just because no one there cares. Twitter I haven’t figured out. I’m tempted to try and just stick more to the LIVE Tweeting but political crap draws me back in. As for G+… I’ve deleted every post and Collection I’ve had over there. Sadly, the best social experience where I had met a ton of people, is in overdrive trying to force everyone out of it.
Overall… Social just doesn’t feel very social anymore. It breeds echo chambers, mob mentality, and seems to bring out the worst in people. I’m much happier with the internet when it is media (movies, TV, books, comics, etc…) and learning things. Most of the time, this no longer happens in a social setting. In fact, when ever some social aspect is added to something, it seems to just turn it into yet another dumpster fire or cesspool.