Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The noise of Social Media

In the mid-nineties, I was a member of a writers' group. And I wrote a humorous poem using a lot of computer/Internet terms. Then I edited it, removing a lot of terms that I realized most people wouldn't understand. ... And then, when reading it to the group, *nobody* understood it anyway! They didn't understand any of the terms which I thought were in common use.

So maybe you can understand why it's a bit of a shock to me now to realize that I'm becoming alienated to the new computing/Internet world. Because it's all now about "web 2.0" or Social Media, and they just don't do anything for me.

While watching the Apple keynote this week, everything seemed damn impressive. And okay, the Retina MacBook is awesome, if I didn't work from home I'd get it for sure. But otherwise, after sobering up (figuratively!), it occurs to me that basically everything new in iOS 6 or OS X Mountain Lion is social-media driven or Cloud driven. 

And while I am for communication in general (in the broadest sense it is vital), the reality of the twitter/Facebook world just seems so hollow to me. Nothing in it interest me. If somebody has something interesting to say, it is much more likely to arrive in an article or an email than in social media space. I always wrote concisely, but very few of my thoughts which feel important to me can fit in 140 characters, sorry! And if you've put some thought and feeling into something, how likely are you to post it on somebody's facebook "wall"? 

In the end I realised that I am just not likely to really use any of the new features in iOS 6 or Mountain Lion.

To me, the Social Media space feels like a party. Dozens of people all talking at once, trying to be heard over the noise. The only time I remember having a great conversation at a party was once me and two other people had sequestered ourselves in a quiet corner for an hour. That was really good, but it only happened because we isolated ourselves from the teeming masses and the noise for a while. 

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