Skip to main content

Putting the "Social" in Social Media


Perhaps you've the seen the signs? Various advertising billboards around town have sprouted-up, attempting to make a connection with a static object and a live social media account. This is a product of Adams Outdoor Advertising Company, and they even have a web site devoted to it. Here they tout one of their more pronounced billboard messages: 'Our first tweet was hand-painted.' They go on to explain how they come to equate their business with that of social media:
Inherently social and used to reach large groups of people to share information, outdoor advertising is not unlike today’s definition of social media. A billboard conversation can stir debate and emotion with its content and physical presence in a community.
Sorry, but I'm not buying it (both literally and figuratively). A static billboard and a tweet or status update within a live social network are two rather different things. In fact, to equate the two would seem to miss the point of what social media is all about, and that is immediacy. It is interaction. It is not staring at a sign and then maybe saying, "Hmm, perhaps I'll talk about this with someone later on." Or, "Maybe I'll give the business a call." No. That is not equivalent to social media.

This brings up another issue, that of not fully utilizing the capabilities and true nature of a social media platform. Spend enough time on, say, Twitter, and you'll notice accounts that are active, yet failing. I've attempted a few that fall within this category, lest someone think that I'm simply pointing fingers. You'll find the account of a political campaign that, yes, publishes tweets, but follows zero people, and interacts with no one. Or the celebrity that basically sends-out tweets as if they were bullhorn messages, yet very rarely interacts with their fans. How is this being "social?"

There is something to be said for the immediacy of a Facebook or a Twitter, of posting something -- be it our own musings or a picture of a kitten in a top hat -- and having folks (some of whom we've never met) respond to it. We can chat, in real time, about a subject. Someone 'follows' us, and we follow them in return. We share our lives (to an extent). In other words: we socialize. Sorry, Adams, but a billboard just doesn't accomplish that.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

If You Could Read My Mind

Dance clubs are a funny thing. They contain within their walls a life force and vibrancy sometimes unmatched anywhere else. When dusk settles and the lights come on, people will flood the dance floors to gyrate to music with hypnotic beats and songs about love, lust and fun at the disco. At gay bars, this sort of scenario usually increases ten-fold. It isn't for everyone, but for many it is a respite from the harsh realities of the real word. It is a place that isn't just a structure, but a sanctuary where folks -- minorities in their own communities -- can take shelter and unwind with abandon, at least for a few nighttime hours.
As someone who benefited greatly from such an aforementioned gay dance club, you can imagine my dismay at news of the closing of Chester Street Bar. In business for over three decades, gay-owned and operated, there was a time when C-Street (as it was known by most) was the only haven for those in the LGBT community, near and far, to enjoy themselves …

3/4

Ok, we're now three-fourths of the way through this year's calendar, so I thought I'd rank the thirty-eight 2017 movies I've seen so far.

Here they are....


1. A Quiet Passion
2. Baby Driver
3. Dunkirk
4. Get Out
5. Kedi
6. A Ghost Story
7. Wonder Woman
8. Columbus
9. Brad's Status
10. Marjorie Prime
11. Maudie
12. Logan
13. Spider-Man: Homecoming
14. Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2
15. Brigsby Bear
16. Atomic Blonde
17. The Big Sick
18. Split
19. Kong: Skull Island
20. It
21. Wind River
22. A Cure for Wellness
23. The Hitman's Bodyguard
24. Norman
25. Kingsman: The Golden Circle
26. Logan Lucky
27. Alien Covenant
28. Ghost In the Shell
29. War for the Planet of the Apes
30. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
31. Life
32. Annabelle: Creation
33. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
34. My Cousin Rachel
35. Baywatch
36. The Bye Bye Man
37. mother!
38. It Comes at Night


It will be interesting to see what the last three months of the year brin…

Unbound

"Step out from the mask you stand behind Fearful lost and blind Time to take the time The pressure’s on you Hide away, hide away No tomorrow, just today"
- Brilliant, Ultravox
Today was National Coming Out Day, so of course it gives some pause for reflection on my own coming out story. It was in April 1993, my junior year of high school (go Chargers!). In the six years of writing this blog, I have alluded to how I came out, but never really delved into the intricacies of how it came about. What better day to do so than today?
My first (small) indications of homosexuality manifested in grade school. While in first grade, I thought a fifth grader looked cute. In fifth grade, I would stare, longingly, at a boy in class, until he caught me looking at him. There were some infatuations with boys in middle school, and a first sexual experience during freshman year of high school. Everything up to that point had been, for the most part, based in the physical realm. I liked the way certain…