Why I’m giving social media a rest for a while

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For a while now I’ve grown increasingly impatient with twitter and I fell out of love with Facebook months if not years ago. So what’s gone wrong with social media?

I have a healthy fascination with the Internet, to the extent that I spend most of my free time online in some shape. You could argue that I’m addicted to the net but that is simply not true. I use the net for practical things every day – it has truly broadened my mind. However, there is a dark side to the Internet, one that brings out the worst in people (myself included) and I’ve grown tired of this.

I had originally included a couple of paragraphs on politics, the media and the spread of misinformation, but I’ve edited those out for fear of sparking a full on debate. I’m just tired of reading about stuff that no longer interests me or is factually incorrect. The Internet and social media can be better than all of that and I’m going to find that instead.

#ILoveNIBecause is the hashtag that finally pushed me over the edge! Has it really become that bad? This country has much bigger problems than a sense of national identity. Can someone sort out the economy please?

I could of course stop following certain users and mute hashtags but I don’t want to. Social media should be fun and not work, but more and more it has become about managing your online presence and maintaining your reputation. I evangelise this stuff at work and have been a big advocate for social media over the years. I still am. But just like everything else, taking a step back and reviewing your social participation has become a requirement now.

Thinkup analysis of my tweetsWill I miss it? Of course, 56% of my tweets are replies, so I like to chat and 22% are links which is just me recommending you read an article. Much of what I tweet about is to be taken with a grain of salt and this in itself is a reason why I need to take a break. If I’m not being serious or taking other people seriously then what is the point? Is it just about entertainment or is social about something more? I like twitter. I like the way it can pick you up when you’re down, I like the way it can help you out when you’re mac won’t boot and I like that most of the time I find interesting stuff on there.

Am I overreacting? Probably, but what harm can time away do? Let’s just call this a holiday.

So what will I do instead? I’m going to cheat! I’ll still look at Instagram because I like pictures and I’ll probably still post there, I just won’t cross post onto twitter and Facebook. I’ll continue to use Flipboard to read my RSS feeds and for discovery. I’ll still have to use social media for work so I’ll be lurking in the background.

Oh and yes I am sharing this article on twitter and facebook, if for no other reason than to tell people I’m taking a break.

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