I Fail at Social Networking, and so do you…

The internet is a wonderful thing! A wealth of knowledge at our fingertips, and immediate access to our friends and family.  We live in an age where I know so much about my friends lives, that it is easy to spark up conversation if I actually ever meet up with them! This happens to me all the time, I bump into a friend in the grocery store, and ask them how the new car is, or how their trip to Thailand went, or that I liked the new pictures they posted of their perfect kids…

Facebook knows every little detail about you. Google might know things too, but your search history or email contents aren’t posted for all your friends and family to see. Wouldn’t that be embarrassing! lol

We offer up our lives inside our Facebook accounts.But it is not just Facebook. Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, Google+, Myspace(joking). But, have you ever noticed that our friends lives are soooo much more interesting and fun than our own. Facebook is kind of depressing for me most of the time. Everyone is posting how great their life is, how they just #boughtthebestthingever…, went on the #tripofalifetime. Again. Look at me!! My life rocks…

This video puts it all into perspective for you my friends…

Feel better? I know I did…

But the web we are all entangled in doesn’t stop with Facebook. The companies that run our favourite sites are fighting a battle for your attention, and in the end, your money. They are in the business of making money, and their sights are set on you…They excel at reminding you that you haven’t tweeted in a while, or that your buddies have been talking about all your favourite hobbies behind your back! You better click the link and get back in the game…

I’ve realized that I have a mutually balanced love and hate for my online life. I love ‘sort of’ keeping up to date with (or at least learning about) what my friends and family are up to. Why? Because I care about people in my life. But most of the time, I am simply too busy to include them in my hectic life. And, honestly with 4 young kids, I get that some of my friends might be ‘just too busy too’…

But, as time passes, I feel bad about being a hermit. What kind of friend am I really if I see people once a year or even less? I like hanging out with friends. I also enjoy shutting down my Facebook account all the time! Then realize that I am as hooked as everyone else with my online persona. However, I forget to use Twitter, realize that I haven’t blogged on here in a very long time, how much I love Reddit but forget about it, that my RSS reader is filling up with tons of cool stuff, that Google+ is neat but no one I know is really active there. I never “succeed” at any social website…

Look at me having fun...
Look at me having fun…

Then I ask myself, why didn’t I post about taking some time off of work, because I couldn’t cope with a tornado of crap that hit me all at once? #nervousbreakdown. That is life, isn’t it? But instead, I took pictures of me mountain biking, and joking that it was my therapist…It kinda was. And kinda is…

That is the key distinction for me. We go on these sites to feel better about our kind of normal, boring lives… I don’t think I’d go on Facebook if all I saw was how hard it was for my friends to pay their bills, that their marriage was on the rocks, that their kids were making them go insane, that they had just lost their jobs. We get that intimate with people in our lives, but not there… So, our online personas aren’t real. They aren’t. To get to know people, we need to accept that we are probably seeing them with rose-coloured glasses, and need to dig deeper. In person.

So, I accept that I fail at social networking , and I can only hope you do too…

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Tom Anderson on the Google+ and Facebook War

Today Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg revealed some of their upcoming changes that will be launched in the next little while. There has been quite a lot of discussion on Google+ today about how big of a change is coming up.

Remember MySpace? Nah, me either. But it used to be the biggest site out there…One of the people that ran Myspace was Tom Anderson. All kidding aside, Tom Anderson has a great perspective on how to run a social network. He’s now a user on Google+, and gave some commentary on the wars going on between Google and Facebook, and how the changes are going to end up benefiting Google in the end. Here is his commentary for you…

Why Facebook’s New Vision is Good for Google+

I sat back in awe watching Zuckerberg at F8 today. Facebook has done it again — they are always reinventing themselves, always pushing toward the future. They’re so good at incorporating other ideas at the right time (http://on.mash.to/rkpYna) and leaving out ideas, when the’re too early.

Many people have messaged me on G+ saying that the new Facebook looks like MySpace of 2008. Customizing profiles with modules, music, video, news. There’s some truth to that. But MySpace (even under my leadership) was a rudimentary and often poor implementation of those ideas. It’s also true that people may have not been ready for MySpace back then. (Not to mention that web standards and bandwidth may have not been ready.)

The thinking behind Facebook and MySpace have always shared some basic tenets, if not from the outset, at least by late 2004:

1) Everyone will be online. Some old folks will learn. The young will swim in it.
2) Everything gets better online when you can socialize around it / talk about it.
3) People want a “place” on the web, to be found, to communicate, and represent themselves.

These are some of the basic reasons these sites are so popular. Facebook gradually got better than MySpace at realizing all these basic ideas. The one they were never that good at was “representing” the individual. That will probably change with this new launch. There’s a chance Facebook could execute poorly and things won’t work as well as they hoped, but that’s not likely. Facebook generally gets things right over time.

So if Facebook keeps getting better & better, and keeps delivering on the basic promise of “social networking,” how is that good for Google+? It’s good because with the changes announced today, Facebook becomes quite different. I wouldn’t say that today’s Google+ is too much like today’s Facebook. But I will say, that to succeed in the long run, it’ll have to be different. And it just got easier to be “different.”

Here is the link to read the rest of the post. Oh, and while you’re there, sign up for Google+!
via Google.

Can we possibly keep up with the Speed of Modern Technology?

Compact Disc player carousel for three CDs.
Image via Wikipedia

What will be the next big thing? The Facebook killer? The iPhone killer? The MySpace killer? Oh, wait MySpace is dead…

I read articles all the time about the death of some site, technology, OS, or gadget. It seems just like yesterday that the iPod came out. Some of the technology that has died I’ve never even heard of!

I went to a concert the other night, and the musician gave me his CD. It was really nice of him. I felt like I was getting a present. But, when I got home, I was like, ‘what am I going to do with it?’. Continue reading “Can we possibly keep up with the Speed of Modern Technology?”