Heard those days: “I’m absolutely inconsistent. I haven’t been able to update my social networks and publish on my blog for a couple of days. I’m so totally out of everything”. The big great vaccuum of our lives at a time when social is the rule and you only exist via your Facebook and Twitter accounts… This is some kind of a frightful evolution of the digital natives: so implicated in their 2.0 social life that they feel empty whenever they’re not up to date on every single account they have. Being a star on Facebook, a ninja on Twitter ot the next big thing on Tumblr is the new fame we’re all seeking. Or so does it seem…
Unfortunately, what was originally designed to save us some time tends to need more and more, soaking us up, extracting every inch of energy left in us after a hard day’s work, filling our thoughts even when we should be on off mode, making us feel guilty about not being able to deal with everything at the same time. The reality is: dozens of tools are available to ease your way throughout the web. Publishing, prepublishing, following, unfollowing, sharing, finding the next golden nugget that nobody’s heard of (or so few that you feel like a modern treasure hunter about to unveil some kind of an amazing discovery that will change the face of the web for the next, say… 10 minutes)… Once you’ve put a foot in it, you’re just doomed!
No wonder if there’ll soon be rehabs for those who cannot disconnect, ever. Social networks have become the most famous and universally shared legal drug. Everybody can join, everybody can become a social media guru, everybody can earn recognition from their peers. How dreadful can it be to realize you just shut down your computer and forgot to tweet your community good night. Exaggerating? Do you really think so?
The truth is: you cannot escape it, like any other addiction. The main difference being that you’re supposed to fall for this one. Not like drugs. Not like sex (though some do get some pride in claiming they’re the new Michael Douglas). Not like alcohol (which, past 18, isn’t a fuss anymore). Media, teachers, friends, family get you into it. There’s no way of using your joker. Even if you weren’t so keen on joining the tribe first. How many reluctants are now more addicted than the people who brought them to Facebook at first? Look around you: they’re everywhere…
The main question is: how can you take a break from it without feeling guilt taking control of you? As for myself, I do recognize that I haven’t been able to update my own social accounts as much as I wanted to lately (if any). Too busy to handle my clients’, I have left mine desperately yearning for new material. Did it affect my community? Probably. I didn’t even take the time to check the insights. To be honest, I barely check them when it comes to my own little world: I’m not obsessed with followers (although some strange force drove them to my thread and I earned quite a few without even tweeting – and THAT’s interesting), shares (although if you could share my posts I would be very grateful) or likes (bis repetita). But most of my keen aren’t like this.
They’re the kind of people you bump into because they’re constantly checking their screen and cannot avoid any obstacle in real life. Masters of the great big web, unadapted to reality. Is this why they’re being so concerned about having an omnipresence that grants them the right to exist, to become someone without having to get ridiculous in a real TV show? Seen as THE way of becoming famous by some, social networks have been so much depicted as the place where everything is possible that no one wants to miss their chance. And to be the next editor in chief of the WWW, you better scoop smartly and frequently.
“Anytime, anywhere” might be the new moto. Accessible from the darkest backroom or the sunniest beach, digital natives aim to make an impression. To do so, they’re capable of anything, as long as it’s online and they’re able to tweet it! Welcome to the social era..!