Social Media Hits the Fan

I’m not sure what to make of this infographic. It’s clearly coming from an anti-FaceBook source, which I have no problem with, but you might find it a little biased. The most egregious lack is any mention of Google+, with 110.7 million unique users, according to the last crowd sourcing reply on G+. But if the intent is to tar FB and Twitter users exclusively with high narcissism and low self-esteem, then you can see why they left it out. Know your propaganda, even if you agree with it. Anyway, take a look, and below the infographic I will compound the insult by telling you why I despise FB and think G+ is so much better.

Psychology of Social Networking
This infographic was provided by Psychology Degree. Please visit their site to find out more about them.

One factoid jumped out at me. Does the average person have 150 friends in real life? Sounds far too many, or at least an extremely elastic definition of friend, almost as elastic as the one FB uses.

I despise FB because the experience is akin to entering a noisy gaming arcade, with bad rap music playing, and the machines practically grabbing the cash out of your pocket. Too loud to have a proper conversation and anyway, the text boxes aren’t designed for that – a shouted message or a status update is all they’re good for. I visit FB as little as possible, only to dash in and out for a quick word with my family in Indiana. By the way, they’re not narcissists or people with low self-esteem.

I’ve been on Twitter for just over a year and still don’t know what it’s for. Obviously a force for both good and bad – the mobilisation of citizen dissent and racist abuse – but what normal, everyday purpose does it serve? I automatically share G+ and Beautiful Railway Bridge posts on Twitter and FB, as well as interesting bits from the news on Twitter. I’m followed by 16 people and following 23. Clearly I don’t get it, though Some Grey Bloke does.

Google+, on the other hand, is a delight and a distraction. You can have a proper conversation, and build relationships that transcend the stupid monocategory of Friends. I’ve met people I like, would be happy to see in real life, and the place feels like home. A clean and uncluttered home with a big living room, where you sprawl on a comfortable sofa, have a beer and a good crack. Circles make it easy to add on smaller rooms for particular categories, where you can have more private conversations. It’s so easy to do this that I’ve developed what might be a bad habit. I’m circled by 459 people and only follow 317. Why the disparity? Because the FaceBook Friend disease is spreading to G+. Some are notching up followers with no concern for like-mindedness, shared interests, or even if they could stand sharing an elevator with any of them. I doubt they actually read my posts. I’ve followed a lot of people back for the sake of politeness, and there is a Being Polite circle where I park them all, adjusting the stream so I don’t get any of their posts. Where there’s not even a shred of common ground, I don’t follow back.

See, the social media are beginning to erode my deeply cherished curmudgeonality. Bad social media!

10 thoughts on “Social Media Hits the Fan

  1. I deleted my facebook account a few years ago and will never go there again, but despite joining G+ at the beginning I’ve never really taken to the interface. In the spirit of “like-mindedness” I’ll take another look. Thanks for a really interesting post.

      • See, this is what I mean. I haven’t looked at g+ for months, but that’s me, at least it’s my profile pic, the feather. But who ARE those people? Yikes! I haven’t made a single post, yet there they are, hanging out on my home page. What the… Oh wait, there’s my son. That’s one I know. A few from a writing group, but I wouldn’t have a clue who the others are. I can’t even remember creating a circle. Or commenting, other than to my son – commiserating on the parlous state of the world (corporate greed, climate change, baby boomers, enough already!) Makes me want to take my laundry down to the sacred waters of our creek and whack it on the rocks for a couple of hours. Maybe get baptised at the same time. Oh wait, I’m an atheist. Even so…
        I haven’t bothered to learn more about g+, but why would I? I vaguely remember directing tumblr posts there (another site I’ve let go, don’t even ask about Pinterest). I’m finding it hard enough to post on WordPress, which I actually enjoy. Having said that, I’m offline for another two weeks. I realise I like to comment rather than make posts, but I have to try sometime :)

      • I hope you’ll give it another go. Good stuff. Loved the beast, reposted the Muncie Public Library thing, and I’m now following you. Right, put away the missionary pamphlets…G+ Saves!

    • I use fb, wp, pinterest, and g+ for different purposes (each one for a different aim). I am looking for like-minded souls in the different domains of my eclectic (messy?) brain. It’s most interesting when some sites overlap. My best reason for using social media? I am curious about EVERYTHING.

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