What's Wrong With Social Media?
Updated: Jul 11, 2020
The idea for the podcast came to me on the day of the podcast (we were supposed to have thought this earlier, but no. Procrastination is our nation lol). Even then, I'm glad we spoke on this because the initial concept was to dish out what all is wrong with the three biggies of the virtual space, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter (FAINT), but we ended up with a whole different revelation.
You know one of those stories where the protagonist is on the lookout for evil to destroy and ends up finding it within? #SpoilerAlert
Facebook in 2008
It allll began with Facebook. That's where all the big bois and girls (or small bois and girls pretending to be big) went. For me the year was 2008 and the aspiration was to join Facebook lol, like it was a big private invite-only party. Who knew (everyone except me) all you needed was an email address and boy it was on. All I did for 3 hours a day at an internet cafe (no pc/internet at home) was-
ADD EVERY FRIKING BODY.
LIKE EVERY FRIKKING PAGE.
POST CRINGY FRIKKING STATUS UPDATES.
15 year old me :|
And I thought I was the most boss kid ever. *sigh*, nice naive days...
Facebook stayed strong with me for a good 5 year period where my virtual world of utopia was filled with hope, crime city, poker, Farmville, and late-night messenger chats. It was completely different from the real world and served as a perfect disconnect-
People grew up and started bringing the real world into the virtual sphere. Change.org campaign, confessions of abuse, ideological fights, suddenly utopia was nowhere in sight and my reasons for visiting Facebook started becoming scarce. Oh and also my #okayboomer family started using the platform and I ran out of reasons for not accepting their request.
Around the introduction of Instagram also came the feeling of growing older. I remember everyone jumping on the #Insta bandwagon but in my head, I was like 'why?' Do you know that reluctance to try new things? Yeah, you're turning into your #okboomer parents.
Instagram just felt like an endless scroll of pictures (a definite change from the text beast Facebook), but still quite redundant. I mean if photos are what you wanted, there was always Google, Pinterest, heck even Tumblr & 9gag. But that filtermania caught on and before we knew it our feeds were flooded with 50 HuesOfSepia and deep, old-soul content (guilty!).
Now I mean no offense here, but what started putting me off of Instagram was the 'self-proclaimed-influencer'. Content that was definitely put out with the intention to influence people to buy products/services, but in the early days all they could say was that they were 'Honest reviews'. I mean some were really creative and entertaining in their approach, but the rest were just... sigh* (I mean all the more power to you if you're an influencer and honest about it, but it's those who are not honest about it that kinda bum me out. Either way, everyone's gotta hustle at what they gotta hustle, yeah?) Twittahhh though is just a cold-depressing mafuckah. Thankfully never jumped on the 40 character hype train were brevity is your superpower, politics and religion are your faith and being condescending is what you get paid for. Twitter is just, gah...
They started off as a Social Media platform but eventually rebranded themselves as a 'news' platform. Obviously most users never got the memo and you can still see people wish each other good morning, share memes, replicate Facebook content on, and et all.
The fact that it is so 'in the moment' triggers my anxiety the most. Let's face it, most of the content we consume on Twitter (and other platforms too), has got zero add on value to our lives. I might go on a stretch and say that even if you didn't know about its happening, it would absolutely make no difference to your life, but that's not how we're built as humans.
We're always on the quest, chanting 'NEW NEW NEW' like 'IMHOTEP IMHOTEP IMHOTEP' (The mummy movie reference for you gen z's). So I see how twitter scratches the itch, gladly it's not mine and well if it's yours, good for you (no sarcasm intended)
Eventually, on the pod, me and me matey who was called 'Off the grid' for this one agreed that mediums as a whole are a void of emptiness. They are blank spaces that are filled with content users like you and me choose to fill it with. So the truth is that we don't need to raise questions about a medium's integrity, the question that needs to be raised is about ours. It's a reflection of the choices we make as a hooman. Nothing more, nuin less.
The conversation gets much more fun and bad jokey (the usshh) and insightful on the pod which comes across as a chill discussion that you would have with a friend. Because with the Sheeples pod, you become the third friend to the two of us as we enter that safe-space and talk candid- No judgments :)
You can listen to the pod right here: https://bit.ly/lets-talk-sm
This is Zee signing of. Bleat away sheepy sheepy sheeples :)