Sunday, June 21, 2009

Anti-Social Networking ?

Hello, my name is Suzanne...and I'm on my way to becoming an addict. I have admittedly become more and more hooked on "social networking" via Facebook, and just this week started tweeting on Twitter (yes, the verb is to tweet, not to twit). It all started as a way to write more and flex the creative cranial muscles, but it quickly took on a life of its own and I'm now hooked. Granted, I'm not an addict of junior high school proportions. My Facebook friends are actually friends, and number less than 50. But something odd is starting to happen...

On Twitter, you microblog thoughts of 140 characters or less. It's a good exercise in self-editing and creativity. But I discovered there are lurkers floating out and about who just search for specific words in entries and then become your "followers." Case in point--I made the following entry:
"Any good recipes for cooking a 40-pound evil dog? I'm thinking about grilling or crockpotting!" Within an hour I had two new followers who were recipe enthusiasts! They just saw the word "recipe" in my entry and became a disciple. Now I guess I have to figure out how many minutes per pound are required for a terrier/spaniel mix!

Example #2--I made a risque entry about an anagram of my name that included the word "Zen" in it. I immediately had a new follower who's a yoga instructor. If you read the ain't about yoga! (Although some clever twisting wouldn't hurt.)

I'm apparently taking relatives down with me now too. After months of poking fun at Facebook, my husband finally saw some actual work possiblities from the networking and he joined this afternoon. So there the entire family was all in the office late on a sunny Sunday afternoon. You may be thinking, "Oh isn't that nice, they were all together!! And on Father's Day too!" Well let me paint a clearer picture. Chris on one laptop setting up his Facebook profile. Me on the other laptop Tweeting. Evan on his iPod Touch IMing his friend. I even texted my husband from 4 feet away to tell him it was time to light the grill. And there in the middle of all this "social" networking was 6-yr-old Ben, playing with his barn animals set.

So off went the PCs, off went the iPod, on went the sneakers and out went the Stanleys for a walk around the 'hood. We saw real people and actually spoke with them! And no one said "BRB" or "LOL" even once! It was so nice, as soon as we got home I ran upstairs to blog, tweet and FB about it! Baby steps, steps.

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