I warn both of you reading that this post has been simmering at some level in my cranium for at least a couple of weeks. It’s not really controversial, nothing new being added to anything, just something that I’ve thought would make a decent writing prompt if I ever decided to be prompted and ever decided to write. And honestly, how’s that for a really vague and meaningless opening sentence? So much for simmering…
I changed career paths last year to begin working in social media. I’m all over Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIN, blogs and magazine sites and RSS readers and iPhone apps and whatever else can be used or done to connect people to each other. Professionally, it’s about connecting people well with each other and with our company. It’s brainstorming and creatively targeting ideas on using these tools in productive and ultimately profitable ways. Personally, it’s making friends, having conversations, enjoying the back-and-forth of folks all over the country and around the globe over usually the most mundane and the most important pieces of life. It’s all that and a bag of chips.
For me, the SOCIAL aspect is something that I often find personally lacking. I’ve gone through things over the last ten years that have taken some of the wind out of my sails – a good thing for the most part, since blowhards need to be de-winded from time to time. But there’s often a lack of confidence that I feel holds me back. To be honest, I feel some of this lessens when connecting via the internet. Maybe the anonymous nature of the thing, the ability to be and say who/what I would want to be or say. Maybe it’s the disconnectedness geographically that makes actual connectedness better or more palatable somehow. Whatever it is, I like it – especially when those online connections spill over into actual space from the virtual world. People are people, whether we have met and shaken hands or only met and exchanged avatar twibbons.
Then there’s the MEDIA part, where I see all kinds of things around MEDIATE, MEDIATION, MIDDLE GROUND. I huge chunk of my journey to this point has involved me being the one in the middle, the one seeking to bring opposing sides together or to bring reconciliation and relationship back into broken circumstances. I see these connections as very real, very meaningful ways for all of us to forgive, to grieve, to confess, to move on – whatever we can do to build each other up, to teach each other and learn from each other, to bring Truth into what’s usually just our opinionated Facts – that’s what I see in that word as well.
So if you see me tweeting too much on Twitter or facebooking too much on Facebook or linking in too much on LinkedIN, just smile and wave, write back if you’re so inclined, and think about me trying to be social, trying to be middling, or just simmering over long full-of-whatever posts about live, the universe and everything.
And if you see me on MySpace, tell me to get away and get a real life.