Saturday, October 24, 2015

Social Issues

Normally on Saturdays it is a time for me to do a character profile or promote a book. However today I wanted to take a prompt from a 30 day writing challenge list and the first one is five things wrong with social media. There are pros and cons to any type of social media as well as face to face interacting. I would imagine that my list of five things will very dramatically from what others would consider to be wrong but for me the list is simple.

First is the promotions put on by the operating companies. I understand that they are here to make business but do I have to see an ad for posting my post every time I put something up on my author or charity series pages? Why is it needed? Give me the option and if I choose to believe that I must reach 800-1,400 new people that I may or may not know then I will enlist your help but once I know the option is there I do not need to be reminded for each post I do.

Second would be the limited amount of information I can see. If I do not like or share something from a friends page a certain number of times per week then I am unable to find them without actually hunting them down. Their updates are invisible. I do not get to share in their life moments. I am left in the dark. Same for people I hope can see what I am posting, if they go on vacation for a week or two and do not check in with a certain number of likes then I will vanish from their news feed until they make the dedicated effort to bring me back.

Third honestly may be showing my age slightly as well is aimed almost exclusively at twitter, though Instagram has it somewhat as well, hashtags and the ridiculous abbreviations we all are doing for communication now. I don't want to have to get creative in the spelling of words with symbols just to make it fit 140 characters. I do not want to abbreviate until no one can guess what I actually meant. I like reading sentences and full thoughts put up by someone that took the time to make their language comprehensible and choose their words intelligently.

Fourth may upset people, including some I know personally, but I cannot stand the constant onslaught of game requests. I do not play games on social media sites. I do not care if you believe the latest candy crush is the game that changed your life or you simply need more lives to beat level 94, I am not going to be joining you. I have asked people not to send me requests but I still get them so now I just block the games. It is frustrating when half of my notifications are just people that want a few more lives to beat bejeweled blitz.

Fifth and final issue I have with social media is the way it has replaced regular interactions between people. Yes I use it to keep in touch with friends and family across the country and around the world. I have made friends I am very close to and yet have never seen in person but that is not what I am talking about. I hate when I go to the beach and while I am out surfing or walking along the sand I see people everywhere that are uploading a million selfies or updating their status for the ninth time that hour instead of putting down the phone and tablet to enjoy the sunshine. If you are more focused on creating the perfect tweet than you are on the person sitting next to you that is a problem. We need to unplug more often and spend time looking each other in the eye having a real conversation.

Social media has given as thousands of advancements and enhancements but I fear one day it will truly replace human interaction.

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