Sunday, July 30, 2017

Meditating on Social Media Use

It's a glorious day today; I've been outside to sit in a chair, reading or knitting, and basking, four times today, and am kind of hazy from the sun, so my coherence may not be what I would like. But what I want to write about is very much in the box, meaning online stuff.

In terms of social media/online stuff, I'm a mixed bag.

  • If blogs count as social media, I've been using social media for, oh, almost 11 years now (eep). Although given how often I've heard that blogs are dead (ahem), that probably isn't true now, if it ever was.
  • Facebook, that counts for sure, right? I don't know exactly how long I've been on that (and I can't see where it tells me, am I missing it?), but it's probably 7 or 8 years. In fact, I remember why I decided to join, after having ignored it for a while: my second cousin sent out an email to all the family that started out, "Well, if we're friends on Facebook you already know this, but I'm buying my first house!" And I thought, "Oh, is that the sort of thing you can see with Facebook? Well, maybe I do want to do it, then." I probably post more photos of Carlos than anything else, but I also share things that amuse me, and occasionally serious things, as well as random thoughts that cross my mind.
  • Does Ravelry count? Almost ten years. Much the same thing as with Facebook, the knitting world had gone nuts for Ravelry when it started, and I had no interest until I could see how I would want to use it. I don't use the social aspect of it that much, though, so probably for me, it doesn't count as social media.
  • I joined Instagram earlier this year, after a discussion with a friend about how Facebook sometimes gets overwhelming, the world and politics being what they are now. She suggested Instagram as a different way to be online and sharing, but maybe less overwhelming, and I would say I have found it so. It's photographic, though you can write about the photo of course. I follow friends, but also knitters and other yarn people, and photographers (both individuals, and National Geographic, and the US Park Service), others that I've run across that interest me photographically. Plus Cats of Instagram, and the Hockey Hall of Fame, and so on. As you do. And then there are the hashtags.
  • Then there's Twitter, which I joined last week. I am still uncertain about it. (Here, time to break out of the bullets.)
Though that may be partly that I'm not sure how to use it. I joined for two reasons. One was that recently, I was trying to find someone that I used to work with but had lost touch with years ago, and as her name isn't uncommon, I've never found her before, but this time, I did find a (hardly active) Twitter account that looked like it was her. This was a few weeks back, and I thought about how it was a little weird to join Twitter just to reconnect with her, but still, I'd like to know how she is, but ... I dithered. Then last week, an author I like, Kristin Cashore, wrote on her blog that she was hosting a giveaway of her upcoming book, but only on Twitter, and I thought, okay, that's two reasons, and I would really like to win that book, so off we go.

At first I followed the Bruins, but they are actually very active on Twitter, and since I keep up with them other ways, I started to feel a little drowned in Bruins news. I am following Jack Edwards and Andy Brickley, though, since they're Bruins-related and I don't follow them any other way.

I'm following Kristin Cashore, and the author of that new book I loved, Nevermoor, Jessica Townsend (her Twitter handle is @digressica, which I love), and since I was on an author kick, I also found Frances Hardinge, who wrote another great book I read recently, A Face Like Glass, which was excellent and so unusual. And then there's the Yarn Harlot, but I'm hesitating on other knit/yarn folks, since I do follow a bunch on Instagram, and what I'm trying to figure out is either who uses just one of Facebook/Instagram/Twitter, or more than one but uses them differently. I mean, it doesn't have to be zero overlap; sometimes I cross-post a photo to Instagram and to Facebook, but more often I don't. If I'm going to see what they're saying in one place, or two, I don't need to make it three, you know? But who do I want to follow on Twitter? I don't think I want to get serious and newsy, but what do I want? Still undecided.

So, if you have any suggestions, or advice, or just want to talk about how you use, or don't use, social media (generally or specifically), well, to quote Dr. Frasier Crane, I'm listening.


Blogger Suburban Correspondent said...

Instagram is best for knitters and other artists, because visual. Twitter I use for funny people of all stripes (satirists, parents, political, etc.). Brevity is indeed the soul of wit! If you want to see who I follow (or retweet), look me up - @kidsvomitmice

9:26 PM, July 30, 2017  
Blogger Suburban Correspondent said...

Actually, here's a synopsis of the differences among the various social media sites that I just retweeted (from @jeannes_jargon):

Facebook: Essential oils.
Snapchat: I'm a bunny!
Instagram: I ate a hamburger.

9:29 PM, July 30, 2017  

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