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Why I’m Switching Off Social Media

April 19, 2018
Switch Off Facebook

For those of you who’ve clicked through to this post from Facebook or Twitter, yes, I do get the irony. But let me explain.

I think social media was a nice idea. The idea of being able to share things casually with people, without going to the trouble or writing an e-mail, was nice. For a while. It was novel. And I think it did achieve Facebook’s original mission statement of making the world more connected.

It was the service we never knew we needed. Suddenly, we could share with our friends our every thought and photos of everything we ate. Important stuff.

And it became a great way to communicate with and build relationships with an audience too. Social media could introduce us to new people, voices in cyberspace, whom we would never meet, but would watch us from a distance and click like whenever we posted something funny or profound.

But things have changed.

Follower counts, from what I can see, are now, on the whole, pure vanity. They’re easy to fake and don’t reflect anything useful. Having a bunch of followers on any given platform seems to have become something to brag about, even if those followers never interact with anything you post, show any interest in what you do, or come to any of your events.

In the case of Facebook, you’ll be lucky if more than 10% of your followers even see whatever you post. It just isn’t worth the effort of putting it there anymore. Facebook is no longer a free distribution platform. It is an advertising platform which leverages our interest in what our friends are saying and doing, in order to advertise to us. Which, by the way, I have no problem with. My decision has nothing to do with the recent Cambridge Analytica debacle or any fear I have of Zuckerberg using my personal data. I’m not going Elon Musk on it or anything. My timing is more of a co-incidence. I’m not about to delete my account. I’m just changing the way I use it.

So what’s going to happen?

I will still share blog articles on Facebook & Twitter. Not that anybody will really see them. But I will do it anyway. Because it’s free. So why not?

However, I won’t be focusing on Facebook as a means of building relationships. Because I no longer think it’s any good for that – unless you’re a friend on my personal profile. I will use it, where suitable, for advertising my products and services using their ad engine, which I still believe to be the best contextual advertising engine in the word.

So what about all the small talk & discussions?

I’m focussing on things I own. This blog. And good old-fashioned e-mail. Over the coming 6-12 months, this blog will develop considerably. And one of the things I really want to do with it is to build a community. Connecting is nice. I just think I have to change where it happens.

So you’ll want to join my mailing list. Go to the homepage and stick your e-mail address in the box. And you’ll start getting mail from me. Not every week or anything. But now and again. When I have something worth saying.

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