Social networking, Pretend Friends, plus the Lie of False Intimacy


Social networking, Pretend Friends, plus the Lie of False Intimacy

Jay Baer could be the creator of Convince & Convert, a Hall of Fame keynote presenter and emcee, host of this award-winning Social Pros podcast, in addition to composer of six books including Talk Triggers: The Complete Guide to Creating Customers with person to person.

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It is perhaps maybe perhaps not an impression. We actually are doing more with each a day, as technology allows (or forces) us to communicate and intersect and do and eat with unprecedented vigor and volume. We reside our everyday lives at breakneck rate because we can, because we feel we need to maintain, and because every macro and micro breeze blows for the reason that way.

I recall the times before social networking once I would get 20 telephone calls per time and 50 or 60 email messages, and felt exhausted because of the rate of interaction. Now we’ve traded the phone for any other connection points (we only have 2-3 calls each day), however the number that is overall of ringing our doorbell through some apparatus has ballooned like Charles Barkley.

The sheer number of “inboxesfor me), public Twitter, Twitter DM, public Facebook, Facebook messages, Facebook chat, Linkedin messages, public Google +, Google + messages, blog comments, Skype, text messages, Instagram, phone, voice mail, and several topically or geographically specific forums, groups and social networks” we possess is staggering: Email (3 accounts. That’s lot of relationship bait into the water.

The Lie of Possibility

Just how do we justify this? Just how do we persuade ourselves that slicing our attention therefore thin the turkey becomes translucent is a good clear idea?

We take action because we think that more relationships provides more opportunity.

“It’s maybe perhaps perhaps not that which you understand, it is who you understand. ”

“Social media makes a world that is big. ”

“Linkedin is for individuals you realize, Twitter is for individuals you utilized to learn, Twitter is for individuals you wish to understand. ”

Each one of these chestnuts are passed away around like a flu stress since they make intuitive feeling. But frequent among them is the underlying premise that getting together with more and more people is inherently much better than getting together with fewer individuals. We have constantly believed this to be real, plus in reality have actually delivered the relative lines above in presentations and on this website. But today, I’m no longer convinced.

Rather We wonder, just what it ALL wrong if we have?

You Don’t Understand Jack

Along with despair and surprise and surprise, the thing I felt many concerning the loss of Trey Pennington had been confusion. I discovered myself saying over and over repeatedly “Geez, you might think you realize someone…” I’d an identical response whenever another colleague committed committing suicide a few years back and extremely few individuals saw it plainly coming.

The stark reality is, we don’t UNDERSTAND barely anyone.

We interacted with Trey quite a bit online, and twice invested time with him in three proportions. Trey ended up being one of several kindest, most fascinating, ample individuals I’ve ever met. He had been certainly among the good dudes in social networking, and their background in theology and storytelling offered him a refreshingly various perspective on all this. He can be missed, if the outpouring through the media that are social is any barometer, their effect on other people had been possibly much larger than he knew.

I considered Trey Pennington a pal. I suspect a lot of his 100,000+ Twitter followers considered him a buddy. Plainly, many of us are not their buddies, as his death arrived being a surprise that is complete the truth that he had a previous suicide effort earlier come early july, along with been talking about their difficulties with confidants.

But if you’d asked me personally yesterday early morning, i might have stated Trey ended up being a buddy. Social media marketing forces upon us a sense of closeness and intimacy that doesn’t actually occur.

We came across Amber Naslund on Twitter and now we published guide together. But, I’ve never ever came across her child.

Jason Falls is certainly one of my closest colleagues in social media marketing, but he’s never gone to my house.

Mike Stelzner and I also have actually collaborated on numerous jobs, but we’ve never really had a personal dinner.

We evaluate these individuals (and lots of, numerous others) become buddies, and I’m thankful that social media has had them into my entire life. However in contrast to my media that are pre-social (a lot of whom I’ve recognized for 30+ years), i am aware next to nothing about them.

Is the fact that what we would like – investing lots of time building large systems of superficial connections, possibly at the cost of deepening a couple of cherished friendships upon which we could undoubtedly count?

I recognize this is simply not purely an either/or scenario, and relationships that started with a Twitter series or exchange of weblog reviews can grow into treasured real-world ties. Mark W. Schaefer ended up being a genuine buddy to Trey, and had attempted to assist him through this hard duration. Mark and Trey came across on Twitter, and Mark defines the effect with this connection in his book that is excellent the of Twitter. (Mark even offers a post that is tremendous Trey’s death, and Olivier Blanchard’s tribute to Trey is moving and essential).

But those circumstances where we “meet” some body through social networking, are able to connect in true to life, then establish relationship that produces true relationship are quite few. So when social media marketing gets larger and much more pervasive, this chasm becomes even more complicated to cross. As personal companies in social networking have actually gotten bigger, I’ve finished up referring to my life that is personal less because a lot of that group don’t know me personally, or my spouse, or my children, or my city, or my passions. We don’t wish to bore people who have the inanities of this each and every day. (Facebook could be the one exclusion, as I’ve always kept my account that is personal relatively).

To some extent, i do believe this describes the popularity of Google + among individuals with extremely followings that are large Twitter and/or Twitter. Bing + provides the possibility for a do-over, to generate a brand new selection of connections that tend to be more carefully developed.

But that’s simply medicating the outward symptoms, perhaps perhaps perhaps not curing the condition. Basically, technology and our utilization of it really isn’t –. In reality, it might be driving us farther apart, once we learn more and much more individuals, but understand less and less about every one of them.

Trey provided us a glimpse with this in the final tweet:

And Trey’s buddy Jim O’Donnell underscored it together with message on Trey’s Twitter web web page:

“To my friend Trey Pennington, one of many worst reasons for social networking is we are able to be surrounded by many but still feel totally alone. ”

Making Friends Away From Connections

Perhaps we ought to be focused less on making plenty of connections, and focused more on making a couple of friends that are real? I’m going to try and focus on this, to determine individuals (like the three above) with who I would like to develop genuine friendships, while making a concerted work to achieve this, no matter if it indicates answering less tweets and web log opinions from the bigger number of casual connections.

We need to simply take at the least some of those social networking spawned relationships towards the next degree, otherwise what’s the purpose beyond producing presses and publication readers?

You think you realize somebody, you don’t. And that’s social media’s fault. But much more, our very own.

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