Friday, 17 May 2013

The thumbs up post - a beatnik's guide to social sites

Do you remember the first time you realized you were hooked on some social media site? Or should I ask - did you ever realize you can't stop using it? Spending long hours looking at some friend's random photo album will not further your time-management techniques. But don't worry, it's just an inevitable side-effect of the Computer Age and with a little attention it can be kept within safe barriers.

There are many debates on the topic and serious studies are written about the dangerous side-effects of the online depencency, but on the other hand, there are people who simply don't care to share their relationship status for example and stopped using / have never ever used social media sites. I've recently read an interview with those who quit Facebook for a shorter/longer period of time, explaining the reason of their choice. I must metion that the title of the article was somewhat funny - Are You A Psychopath If You Don't Have A Facebook Account? We Don't Think So - and you can read it here.

I don't think we should make such a harsh difference between Facebook users and non-users, but I'm sure we've all gone through various phases of our online socializing path: I sometimes feel the urge to share, like, tweet, pin or blog, other times I'm so fed up with the new timeline, the annoying game invitations or the stupid posts of others that I seriously consider deactiving my account. However, I could never do it because of my social community manager duties at the office, but that's another story.

As I tried to examine my social networking habits, I thought I could write a list of the social profiles and the way I use them:

1. Twitter: the business source

- I use it for job-related purposes, I share links of articles that I've read and found important;
- a few years ago I was a bookmark maniac but after a while there were so many uncategorized websites in my browser that I couldn't figure it out what website I bookmarked for what reason. I don't bookmark sites anymore, but post them on Twitter.

Office Beatnik usage score: 5%

2. Pinterest: the creativity source

- Ladies, beware! Causes instant addiction!
- The story is the same as with Twitter - for me it's an alternative for bookmarking and works just great for images and videos;
- I love lists and categories and labels and image galleries, so Pinterest is absolutely for me and not only for me, but for millions of users worldwide. Why? Images are more appealing, people love images and have no time for long blogposts (If this is true, I'm wondering who'll read this one);
- I've gathered ideas to garden party decoration so far, to kitchen renovation, hairdos and make-up tips;
- Only by looking at my (or others) boards I come up with new ideas;

Office Beatnik usage score: 10%

3. Facebook: the information source

- I had to check the date when I've created my profile (November 17, 2007), I stick to it ever since;
- friends, colleagues, family members, ex-classmates use it, just a click and I can chat with them;
- most importantly I use it for 'information gathering' about the brands, blogs, bands, books, events I'm interested in;
- I've encountered lots of businesses (smaller businesses) that have a website, but their page on Facebook is more up-to-date, so it's more convenient to like their page and have their updates in my newsfeed;
- I'm not into sharing every detail of my personal life, I mainly use it for being informed;
- Utility: thanks to my favorite bar's 'Your favorite song' contest on Facebook I recently won a concert ticket; if I didn't like the Canon page, I would have never known about their 'Buy a camera and win a bike' contest and would have never actually won a ravish new bicycle;
- The gym where I train posts the timetable each and every day, so I don't have to hit up their website to find out what class should I attend next;

 Office Beatnik usage score: 85%

What about you? Where do you expose your online persona?

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