It’s been a while since I posted a status update on Facebook

It’s been a while since I posted a status update on Facebook. Probably mostly because my current unemployed life of reading, watching TV, playing video games, walking, surfing and doing not much else is not often worthy of comment. Oh, yes, I have applied for more than 50 jobs and have not received so much as an interview in return. But I’m not looking for pity; I simply consider that a fact worthy of comment.

It’s also the nature of internet social media that’s rendered me silent on Facebook recently. A nature that has caused introversion in me for the same reasons the real world often does: its immensity and complexity. The realisation that the volume and character of my particular voice must be insignificant when set beside the cumulative voices of the rest of the online world. Or at least my friends list. It’s a view occasionally reinforced by statuses of mine which are completely ignored by more than 100 people I’ve decided, in some context or another, are my friends. It’s ironic that among such ignored posts, links to blog posts such as this have been the most commonly ignored. Sure, many people have little time to read more than a few sentences these days. But again: assuming some of the people exposed to the material have been, are or would always claim to be friends of mine, it is disheartening that indifference is so often adopted.

It’s also an energy thing. The numerous – but thankfully not necessarily grand in scale – failures I’ve suffered during my life in pursuit of various objectives have taught me that my energy, along with my time, is precious. That although failure is valuable for learning it is also taxing and can draw energy from other pursuits presently doomed to failure that might otherwise have been successful. Basically what I mean is that not only is online social networking not necessarily productive, even from points of view such as entertainment, but its pursuit as a pastime can sap energy from other worthwhile or even vital activities (ironic that the auto-type on my phone tried to write “viral” instead of “vital”, there). That idea might not be particularly new, but when one is given enough time to consider its implications (by, for example, disabling one’s Facebook account for a couple of months), the resulting realisations are frightening.

And, finally, it’s a privacy thing (another irony, considering some of the personal things I’ve aired on this blog). Social media is a wonderful way of accessing all sorts of interesting facts of various degrees of dubiousness about people we know. One of the problems is, and this might be only me, if someone is interested in something I find either irrelevant or reprehensible, I’m much less forgiving online. I’ve removed at least four people from my friends list for ‘liking’ that Tom Waterhouse suckhole. But in person I’m unlikely to be so critically dismissive of the same person. And this isn’t necessarily balanced out in terms of severity by my favourable opinion of someone who shares an interest of mine. Although the online, as opposed to real world, medium does arguably allow for a deeper conversational exploration of two peoples’ mutual interests. At least if they both feel more comfortable expressing themselves in writing than otherwise. So I guess from that point of view I can understand that perhaps some of my statuses/blogs are offensive or not easy to relate to, and that is why they’re ignored. Understanding doesn’t lessen the disappointment, though. And the other problem is about delivery. Even though I, and many others, try to make my posts humorous, thought-provoking or at least well written (for all I know some people might interpret writing competence as a form of pomposity), there’s probably a lot of people on my friends list who simply don’t care. And simply don’t care to such a degree that my post’s presence on their news feed causes an angry reaction in them. Something’s got to explain so much complete disregard. I simply don’t like the idea of making people angry. And not because it causes me fear, but because I try to have a positive (albeit maybe sometimes jarring) influence on people.

Well, there you go: four reasons. That’ll do. It’s 3am and I’ve indulged in an often suppressed urge to write at an inappropriate time. I suppose, all things being equal, it’s a better indulgence than cigarettes or alcohol. Especially on a Tuesday night. For all you workers out there: thanks for the dole money. Hopefully you’re consoled by the fact that it’s going back in to the economy anyway, even if you’re not consoled by the fact that it helps me to live at least a subsistence existence.

PS If you are on my Facebook friends list and you’ve bothered to read this whole thing, please comment on or at least ‘like’ it. I mean, even if we or one of us wouldn’t technically consider each other ‘friends’, chances are you’re on my list because I at least value to some degree what’s in your brain. So why the bloody hell not share it (what’s in your brain; I’m not trying to force you to share this post (but go ahead if you want))?

8 thoughts on “It’s been a while since I posted a status update on Facebook

  1. It’s 3:50am and the only thing I stopped to read in the multitude of shit I don’t care about (and yet still log in to see) was your post. My brains yanking me further into sleep but there’s so many points you drew upon that I could rant about for ages. Firstly, (I think I’ve started ranting anyway) I’ve noticed that when Facebook asks me how I’m feeling I never really write the answer. Because when I do, no one clicks that little like button. And despite the fact I’d like to say I don’t care, I still do- so I have a little anxiety attack pre-post time to my status’s.

    I enjoyed reading it Colin. So while the rest of the FB population would rather be looking at eachothers half naked selfies, I’d rather be reading this.

    • Thanks 🙂 I know I’d rather have a Mindfulofthoughts than of half naked selfies. But, hey, who among us can claim to have never enjoyed a half naked selfie courtesy of an attractive member of the opposite (or same, if that’s your trip) sex?

  2. It doesn’t take too long to read a blog but people don’t take notice. It surprises me as well, how many hundreds of friends I have, and maybe one might like my blog post on Facebook, and a small handful from Facebook check.

    • I think whether you’re writing blog posts or best selling novels: it’s simply a bad time to be a writer. I reckon people are much more interested in video and photos. It costs much less to download or view them than it used to.

      • Don’t even get me started on video. While I still respect it as an art form, it occupies a much more technical place on the artistic hierarchy which loosely goes, in my opinion, like this: art (as in sculpting, painting, drawing, etc), writing, photography and, last but not necessarily always least, film. There’s others you can chuck in at different positions, too.

  3. I hear you Col.
    I agree with you too.
    As illiterate as I am compared to your amazing literary knowledge I get you!!!
    You are a clever author and need to pursue that further.

    However in reference to your last paragragh, I am not sure how you can value what might be in MY brain.

  4. Pingback: Word Journeys

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