Social Media: We’re All in This Together
I found the perfect social media song.
Hey, I’m a sap. I admit it. But it’s beautiful. And the lyrics are spot on.
As I mentioned when I first began blogging, we’re all seeking to connect with each other – which is, beyond money, beyond marketing, why we’re all so excited about social media. Because it gives us that link to other people, that feeling of community.
I have, at some points in my life, had a frightening realization of how isolated I was…
You move, people move. And suddenly you’re picking up a pie (for one, of course) at the local pizza place – and it hits you. You could easily be one of those people… The ones in the papers who are discovered dead in their apartment, days, weeks later…
Really, most of my friends lived far away. And, naturally they’d get concerned if they didn’t hear from me for a few days, but what would they really do – call my local police department? It would probably take awhile before they took that step. And yes, it was a morbid thought process – but it wasn’t outlandish…
And we have, in many societies, lost any true sense of community. Someone knocks on your door, you lay low. There’s only so much time and, well, ya know, also safety concerns. “At a personal level we are disengaged or indifferent in more and more situations.”
In 2006, Time Magazine realized the impact that the Web 2.0 components were having on our lives (Youtube, MySpace, Second Life) declaring the collective “YOU” “Person of the Year” and describing what was happening on the web as “a story about community and collaboration on a scale never seen before.” (Lev Grossman)
This is an opportunity to build a new kind of international understanding, not politician to politician, great man to great man, but citizen to citizen, person to person. It’s a chance for people to look at a computer screen and really, genuinely wonder who’s out there looking back at them.
And just who is it that’s out there? Probably people better, smarter and cooler than us. Well, that’s what you would surmise from watching anything mainstream. Everyone out there must be perfect – in every way. Not just their physiques – but their “jobs” and “homes” and “relationships”.
Sure, no one touted film or television as reality (wait – they actually have…), but as we became wiser to the medium, as it developed, the progression should have been towards a more accurate reflection of our lives. How we truly live…
Has that happened? Well, not so much.
Who has these perfect homes? Is some hotshot attorney at like 22? (Or for that matter looks good while attached to some torture device, facing death…? But I digress…)… And where are these perfect relationships where people never have a true disagreement, no matter how difficult their circumstance?
In fact, Grossman wisely noted that
you can learn more about how Americans live just by looking at the backgrounds of YouTube videos—those rumpled bedrooms and toy-strewn basement rec rooms—than you could from 1,000 hours of network television.
So is it any surprise that we are so yearning to connect with people like us? Be near each other? Feel a part of this huge world?
We have come full-circle. And I’m glad we get it again.
Because we are all in this together.